Letters

Pool safety

Ed,
I write to you on behalf of Royal Life Saving NSW.
I am asking readers to lend a hand. It’s this simple. People need to be aware that as from April 29th 2016, whether you are selling, buying or leasing a property, LAWS HAVE CHANGED.
Tragic figures show in the past 13 years, 83 young children have drowned in a backyard pool. A further 80 children have suffered neurological (brain) damage.
Startling and disturbing figures show 55% of all 0 to 5 year old drowning deaths in a backyard pool happened either because of a faulty gate or a gate being propped open.
So Royal Life Saving is working closely with the NSW Government in a big push to raise awareness.
We want people to know it is this simple.
If you are buying, selling or leasing a property that has a backyard pool, it must meet safety standards and the property must come with a special Certificate of Compliance.
All the full details that relate to these changes can be found at bepoolsafe.com.au.
Minister Paul Toole has the same view as Royal Life Saving NSW, which is that we can all do more to protect young Australians and reduce backyard tragedies.
It is most concerning to know that around 95% of ALL backyard pools actually fail their inspection first time.
That’s precisely why we urge people in New South Wales to get the information they need from our website.
If you are buying, selling or leasing a property with a pool and don’t have the special certificate required, you are – of course – not ‘legal’. Our campaign highlights the information is out there to help people.
We are all about lending a hand so people can take the action they need to create safer environments.
Of course, many people across NSW will continue to use their pool for a gathering over the autumn months when there is an opportunity. That is why action is the key.
Minister Paul Toole has given me a very clear understanding that the NSW Government wants to see drownings reduced as much as possible. We are right behind them because we are seeing far too many tragedies.
Of the 83 backyard pool deaths of children under 5 in NSW in the past 13 years, unfortunately supervision was missing or inadequate in every single case.
May I thank readers for being vigilant?
May I thank readers for being deeply concerned?
May I highlight to readers, from April 29th 2016, laws have changed? Please get all the details by going to bepoolsafe.com.au.
David Macallister, CEO,
Royal Life Saving Society – NSW.

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