Many drownings have tragically been reported in Quebec in recent weeks, including several in private swimming pools. The safety of swimming pools is tightly regulated by law. If you have a pool, make sure it respects these important safety rules!
A fence is mandatory
A swimming pool must be surrounded by a fence of a least 1.2 meters in height. It must have no opening through which a ball-shaped object 10cm in diameter could pass, and it must not be easy to climb. A cedar hedge, no matter how big and beautiful, does not count as a fence!
If you have an above-ground pool, and its walls are at least 1.2 meters high, it need not be surrounded by a fence. However, the patio, deck or terrace area where the pool is located must be fenced in.
Other safety rules apply to residential pools. For more information, please consult the website of the Lifesaving Society of Quebec.
Important: swimming pools that were installed before July 22, 2010 may not be subject to these rules.
Municipal by-laws may apply as well
Pool owners who fail to respect the above rules may face a fine of 500$ or more (in addition to the risk of a horrible tragedy)! And there’s more: municipalities may also have by-laws in place that provide additional rules concerning residential pools.
Finally, it’s usually necessary to obtain a permit in order to install a pool. You should check with your municipality about applicable permit and by-law requirements.