The city’s planning and zoning board will consider new regulations to some swimming pools at homes in Union.
City Administrator Russell Rost said he has heard complaints from some residents who say that some small inflatable pools are not safe because there is no fencing around them, and unsupervised children could get into the pools and drown.
The city had discussed requiring fences around some inflatable pools in the past, but never took action on the proposed changes.
“When we looked at this before, we were looking at small inflatable pools,” said Rost. “Since then we have had a drowning death.”
Last year, a 2-year-old girl drowned in a neighbor’s inflatable pool.
Rost suggested that board members consider regulations on the size of the pool.
“We thought maybe we should be looking at gallon size more than if a pool is portable or temporary,” he said.
Rost added that city staff will look into how other municipalities regulate small swimming pools, or pools by gallon size.
Mayor Mike Livengood asked planning board member Sarah Lackey, who is a property adjuster at Liberty Mutual Insurance, if insurance requires homeowners with pools to follow safety measures.
“Anything 2 feet deep requires an underwriting referral at the least,” Lackey said. “It doesn’t have to be very big to be a concern for an insurance company.”
Planning board member Bill Isgriggs said most pools should have some safety measures to prevent drowning.
“I think anything over 2 feet deep should be fenced,” he said.
Alderman Bob Schmuke said the city should require some type of pool safety regulations for smaller pools.
“We don’t want to put too many regulations on people, but you have to protect people too,” he said.
The board is expected to discuss pool regulations at its Aug. 26 meeting.