The Queensland Government has passed tough new laws that will force residents to register their swimming pools and pay for inspections.
The move comes as the state recorded the highest number of infant drownings in Australia last year.
Nolan Giles reports.
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In 2009 eight young lives were lost in preventable pool deaths.
This is a figure the government is trying to reduce by imposing stricter guidelines on pool areas.
Stirling Hinchliffe, Infrastructure Minister: “We know the coroners have told us the experts have told us that these higher standards will make a difference make a difference.”
Fencing checks will now cost Queenslanders up to $130.
The changes will also provide a much higher level of training for pool inspectors.
Stirling Hinchcliffe, Infrastructure Minister: “People involved in organisations such as the Royal Surf Lifesaving Association might train to become safety inspectors, also pool maintenance people.”
The legislation is intended to reduce the drowning rate in Queensland, though some believe that without coordinating educational programs it will be useless.
Laurie Lawrence, Swim Coach: “Supervise your kids and have them taught to swim because as they get older they’ll learn to climb the fence so without education and without the other things it’s a toothless tiger.”
Mr Lawrence believes the government can only do so much to prevent these deaths, the real onus is on the parents.
Laurie Lawrence, Swim Coach: “Fence the pool, shut the gate, teach your kids to swim – it’s great, supervise – watch your mate and Learn how to resuscitate, kids alive do the five, you need that information to be successful.”
Training for inspectors begins in june with the legislation set to come into place in time for our summer.
Nolan Giles, QUT News