Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Swimming pool regulations - where are they?

Private swimming pools are an easy way to beat the summer heat in Massachusetts; however, finding laws or regulations that govern safety issues can be a bit difficult. 

The 2009 International Building Code, adopted by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Section 3109 is the first place to look.  Section 3109 governs "Swimming Pool Enclosures and Safety Devices."

The Code of Massachusetts Regulations (105 CMR 435) sets "Minimum Standards for Swimming Pools", but the regulations deal mainly with "public" and "semi-public" pools.  Chapter 140 of the General Laws, section 206 governs "public and semi-public outdoor inground swimming pools.  Finally, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health has an informative site titled "Pools", but again, the information does not cover private pools.

A Google search brings up information on private swimming pool regulations, but links to statutes and regulations are either missing or not operative. 

For those planning to install a private pool, the best course of action is to check with their local by-laws and ordinances.  Such regulations can be found under the building department or the local board of health.  Marblehead is an example of published regulations.