Home Pool Safety

A young girl by the pool holding a beach ball and splashing the water

Make this weekend your "Home Pool Safety Weekend".  Download the Royal Life Saving Home Pool Safety Checklist. This checklist allows pool owners to conduct a self-assessment of the home pool and its surrounds to ensure it is safe for everyone to enjoy, and minimises the risk of young children drowning.

A young child near a swimming pool

This checklist does not substitute for a pool inspection and has been produced for education purposes only. Pool owners should consider getting a professional assessment of their pool’s compliance.

Find out more about how our Pool Inspectors can help with this at the link below.

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Q. Why do so many drowning deaths occur in home swimming pools?

A. Home swimming pools are located close to the house and the child’s natural curiosity brings them into contact with the pool. In the majority of home swimming pool drowning deaths the toddler fell in or went in voluntarily.

Q. How do children get into the home swimming pool?

A. The most common entries for toddlers into the home pool are: via an open gate, through a house door, or by using nearby equipment to climb over the fence.

Q. Will I hear the child calling for help when drowning?

A. No. Many parents mistakenly believe they can listen out for their child but drowning can occur in a matter of seconds without any splash or crying out to alert parents.

Q. How can I prevent my child from drowning?

A. Royal Life Saving believes there are four things you need to do to prevent drowning: 

  1. Fence the pool with a four sided fence, this means that access to the pool is via a gate not the house. It is also preferable that the pool area is only used for swimming and that any equipment not related to the functioning of the pool should be stored outside the pool area. 
  2. Children should be supervised whenever they are in, on or around water, and this supervision should be by an adult and the child should be within arms reach at all times. 
  3. Have you and your child undertake water familiarisation classes. 
  4. Learn resuscitation 

Q. I have a pool fence, how could my child get into the pool area?

A. Unsupervised children can access the pool area by using nearby garden and furniture items to provide them with a foothold to climb over the fence. Additionally, in many social situations a pool gate is propped open to provide ease of access. This should never be done.

Q. What can I do about this?

A. Royal Life Saving has created the Keep Watch program to reduce the problem of toddler drowning in Australia. Keep Watch has four key messages: 

  • Supervise 
  • Fence your pool and lock the gate 
  • Familiarise your child with water 
  • Learn resuscitation 

Toddler drowning prevention involves all of these components.


Heart Beat Club

A mother demonstrating CPR on an infant

In an emergency make sure you know how to react. Learn CPR.

Can you keep their heart beating?

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Mark's Story

Keep Watch Ambassador Mark Gubanyi has a very personal story of toddler drowning

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