VIC: Consumer Affairs Victoria pumps up safety warning for inflatable and portable pools

3 Mar 2014

Inflatable pools will need to come with mandatory safety warnings under new national safety standards introduced this month.

Consumer Affairs Victoria Director, Dr Claire Noone said as of March 1, portable pools as well as their retail packaging would now feature new warning labels outlining potential drowning hazards.

"The temporary nature of inflatable and portable pools meant they are often not fenced which posed a serious safety risk," Dr Noone said.

"Drowning can occur in seconds and adults supervising children must ensure they empty and store portable pools safely away from younger children when not in use."

The mandatory warning labels will highlight state and territory fencing laws for pools, including inflatable and portable pools.
In Victoria, inflatable or portable pools that are deeper than 30 centimetres need to be surrounded by a swimming pool fence.

Kidsafe Victoria Chief Executive Officer Melanie Courtney said mandatory safety labels were key to raising awareness of the danger portable pools posed to children.

"Life Saving Victoria reports three toddlers sadly drowned in the 2012/13 financial year and children aged 0-4 years remain at the greatest overall risk of drowning," Ms Courtney said.

"Portable pools are often not thought to pose the same drowning hazard as other pools because they are not as deep.

"The new mandatory standard will ensure that clear messages are provided to parents and carers about the dangers associated with portable pools when purchasing these products."

Safety tips

  • Always empty smaller pools when not in use.
  • Always store portable pools safely away from young children when not in use. Store the pool to prevent small amounts of water being collected in the pool due to rain or nearby sprinklers.
  • Ensure larger inflatable or portable pools are surrounded by a swimming pool fence.
  • Consult your local government authority for fencing requirements.
  • Always actively supervise children from within arm’s reach when they are in and around the water.
  • Never rely on older children to supervise younger children, no matter how confident you are about their ability to watch the younger child.

For more information, visit the Swimming pools (portable) page on the Product Safety Australia website.

Contact details

Consumer Affairs Victoria Media Advisor: 03 8684 8340
Consumer Affairs (VIC)
Product category