Is Your Pool Fence ASTM Compliant?September 2, 2015
Is Your Pool Fence ASTM Compliant?
If you recently bought a home with a pool the first thing you should do is have a pool fence installed or if there already is a fence have it inspected. This isn’t just for safety reasons. Pool fences that are covered by ASTM standards and meeting those standards can cover most of your bases when it comes to not falling afoul of your city code or rules set by your homeowners’ association. Most importantly, if you have an ASTM compliant pool fence, you can rest assured that your pool fence has passed strict safety standards.
ASTM standards have provided a jumping-off point for drafting state laws that cover pool safety and pool fence standards. In Florida, for instance, homes with pools must provide an enclosure to the pool that is separate from the home, the pool must have a pool cover, and doors and windows that directly access the pool must have an exit alarm with a volume rating of 85 decibels at ten feet. This alarm should sound in less than seven seconds after the door is opened and should have a disabling switch that will last up to 15 seconds, granting time for authorized individuals to enter the pool without setting off the alarm. Alternatively, doors and windows that directly access the pool must have a self-closing, self-latching device with a release mechanism higher than 54 inches above the floor – i.e. above the reach of children who might try to get into your pool without your permission.
Any laws that state legislatures pass that deviates from a national standard may cause controversy, though. ASTM compliance rules regarding pools and pool fences include Standard F1908, which covers a recommended height of at least four feet (some city codes require a height of at least five feet), distance from the ground (no more than two inches is a good rule of thumb, though you could go up to four inches above surfaces with no gravel or grass).
The gate should open outward from the pool so that children pushing on it won’t get in and might even latch the gate if it happens to be unlatched. The latch will preferably be inside the gate where it is not easy for children to reach, at least three inches below the top of the gate. The gap between the gate and the pool fence should be more than half an inch to prevent children from reaching through the gap to open the gate.
These ASTM compliance rules exist because 300 children under the age of five years drown in pools every year. Following these standards will help cut down on children getting into your pool without your knowledge or permission and risk drowning. Your best bet for staying compliant with ASTM standards and local regulations is to go over everything with a pool maintenance and safety professional who can give you advice on how to bring your pool and pool fence up to code.
All-Safe Pool Fence & Covers installs documented ASTM compliant pool fence material only, which means our fence materials have been independently tested for safety by an independent ASTM certified laboratory and they exceed the nationally recognized standards for pool fencing (ASTM F2286-05-2013). You can be assured that we use only the absolute best materials, installation processes and components.