Definition of common terms

Swimming pool or spa

Refers to “any structure containing water to a depth greater than 300mm and used primarily for swimming, wading, paddling or the like” (as per Australian Standard 1926.1 - 2012). It includes above-ground, below-ground, inflatable and portable pools and spas.


What prevents a young child from accessing a pool or spa. It is effectively the fence and gate/s but may also include retaining walls, windows, sides of buildings and anything else that separates a pool from the remainder of the yard or house.

Climbable objects 

Anything a young child can use to gain access to a pool area. This may include, but is not limited to, indents and protrusions greater than 10mm, trees, shrubs, furniture, barbecues, retaining walls, raised garden beds, pot plants, pumps, taps, pipework, lattice, pot plants, rocks, water features, ornaments, clotheslines, trampolines, toys, play equipment. 

Swimming pool and barrier rules

The rules for private pools can vary based upon when your pool was approved. Rule changes took place on 5 November 2001 and 1 May 2016.

Check your barrier regularly. Make sure all gates are self-closing and self-latching from all positions, and that no climbable objects are located within any non-climbable zones.

More information is provided in the Rules for Pools and Spas publication (produced by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety).

Installing or replacing a swimming pool or spa

A Building Permit is required prior to installing a swimming pool or spa and its associated barrier.

When replacing a pool or barrier, please be aware that the rules may have changed since your pool was originally installed, meaning your existing barrier may no longer be compliant.

Please note that all pools must have a compliant barrier prior to being filled with water.

Step 1: Apply for a building permit

You will need to complete an Application for building permit – uncertified (BA2).

Ensure you include: 

  • Site plan to scale showing setbacks and location of proposed pool or spa including barrier location.
  • Structural certification of the proposed pool or details of the proposed spa.
  •  Details of the pool / spa barrier complying with the AS1926.1

Refer to Building Permit Fee and Calculator.

Step 2: Assessment

Building permit applications either certified or uncertified are usually assessed and approved within 10 business days.

Building permits are sent to the builder via post.

Step 3: Once your pool is installed

Once your swimming pool is completed and before you place any water in it, you will need to notify the Shire’ swimming pool inspector to inspect the pool barrier. Please contact us to make an appointment. 

Step 4: Submit a Notice of Completion 

Under the Building Act 2011, the owner or builder must notify the Shire that the work is completed by submitting a BA7 Notice of Completion Form, which is attached to the building permit.

If you would like the Shire to inspect and provide a Compliance Certificate for your new swimming pool or spa, please contact us.

Ongoing pool inspections

Inspections are undertaken of your pool barrier within a four-year period.  However, fees are charged annually. The current annual fee is $25.00 per annum, as per s53.(2)(b) of the Building Regulations 2012. This pool inspection fee will be included on your rates notice.

If you receive an advisory notice that your pool or spa is due for inspection, it is important for you to contact the Shire.

Removing a swimming pool or spa

When a swimming pool or spa is removed, the Shire requires written notification and evidence of removal. The Shire may choose to do an inspection.

Once the removal has been verified, the pool or spa will be taken off the 4-yearly inspections list and the charge removed from future rates notices.

More information and contact

For more information or to arrange an inspection, please contact Building Services on 9290 6660 or email

For information on pool safety, visit the Royal Life Saving Australia.