What the law says about securing private swimming pools
Since 1 January 2004, private swimming pools must be equipped with a safety device to prevent the risk of drowning, especially of young children.
The device must meet certain standards. Failure to do so may result in a fine and criminal prosecution.
Inflatable or demountable swimming pools on the ground are not concerned.
If you are the owner of a private swimming pool for individual or collective use (family or resident pools, hotel, campsite or rural gîtes pools...), you must install at least one of the following facilities:
Standards for swimming pool protection barriers
Protective barriers for swimming pools (governed according to the NF P90-306 standard), they must :
- Make the pool inaccessible to a child under the age of 5,
- Measure 1.10 metres high and be installed more than one metre from the edge,
- The access door must be lockable.
Standards for alarm systems
Systems audible alarm (immersion alarm informing of the fall of a child into the water or perimeter alarm informing of the approach of a child to the pool), standard NF P90-307.
Alarms are the cheapest and easiest to install, they should :
- Be activated 24 hours a day,
- Their deactivation cannot be carried out by a child under 5 years of age.
Pool enclosure standards
Swimming pool shelters that cover the entire pool, regulated according to the NF P90-309 standard, must :
- Be lockable,
- For low shelters, they must be able to support the weight of a 100 kg adult.
- Depending on the dimensions of your shelter, a prior declaration of works or a building permit may be required.
Standards for security blankets
Security blankets (tarpaulin, shutter, pool curtain, mobile terrace or mobile pool floor in compliance with the NF P90-308 standard), in general, these devices must be able to :
- Withstand the weight of a 100 kg adult,
- Do not allow the immersion of a child under 5 years of age.
- Be careful, not all pool covers are considered safety covers (especially bubble covers).
Installation of a swimming pool cover
These safety devices can be installed by yourself or by an installer of your choice.
The installer or seller must provide you with a technical note of information indicating :
- The characteristics,
- The operating and maintenance conditions of the chosen safety device,
- General prevention measures and recommendations to avoid the risk of drowning.
Beware the sanctions can be substantial!
If your pool is not equipped with a safety device, you are liable to a fine of €45,000. In order to comply with the law, the owner must ensure that the safety device is effectively implemented, especially in the event of absence, as he will be held responsible. It is therefore essential to secure your pool.
Movable pool floors and pool shelters are still the safest systems today. Indeed, they completely block access to the pool and are easy to close.
Vigilance and supervision are essential and remain above all the best means to avoid accidents. Let's not forget that children are naturally attracted to water and can drown very quickly.