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Pool preparation: Get summer ready!

Pool preparation for body corporate schemes

Queenslanders live an outdoor lifestyle, and many bodies corporate offer swimming pools and other outdoor recreation areas for residents.

As the Summer months are fast approaching, BCsystems has put together a quick guide to help committee members, on site managers and owners prepare your properties for the high-demand swimming pool season.

Some quick things that can be checked include:

Keep your pool safety certificate up to date.

Pool safety certificates for shared pools expire every 12 months, and the pool must be reinspected and a new certificate issued. If you are unsure where your pool certificate is stored or cannot locate a copy, the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) has a Pool Register (qbcc.qld.gov.au) search tool which can be used to check if a property has a pool registered, how many pools are registered, what the current expiry date is and even download a copy of the most recent certificate.

 

Install a CPR sign.

 

It is a legal requirement in Queensland for all pools and spas to have a CPR resuscitation sign installed. All new CPR signs must comply with a new standard introduced in 2017. If your CPR sign is older than 2017, or if it is faded from the sun, consider replacing it to keep the pool area fresh and well-maintained.

 

Doing a self-audit.

The fence and gate must be checked by an inspector each year for the pool safety certificate, but fences and gates can fail during the year and become non-compliant. It’s the on-site manager’s responsibility to monitor common property, so this check should be on your work routine.

 

Check that:

  • All pool gates close and latch correctly when released from any position (and don’t get stuck on any plants, ground or other obstacles
  • Remove any rocks or other items which might be used to prop open the pool gates
  • There should be no climbable plants or trees near the pool fence – if there are, consult with your committee about replacing those plants with something lower
  • Replace any damaged or broken equipment so you can service the pool through summer

 

Furniture

Inspect all pool and outdoor dining furniture to make sure it is clean, in good condition, not wobbly or loose. If you have broken outdoor furniture, consider a quote to purchase some new items that can be used over summer.

If your furniture is OK for now, consider when it might be replaced next, and discuss adding that to your sinking fund budget with the committee.

 

Ensuring there is a QLD Covid-safe app QR code at the entry to the pool area

Refer to this article for more information: Registering your body corporate facilities on QLD COVID check-in app – BCsystems | Strata Managers and Consultants

All the above items are positive and proactive actions that can be easily completed by on site managers and committees.

Also consider:

 

A slip test of the common area tiles

All common area floor surfaces (especially tiles) must meet a specific standard for anti-slip surface. Over time, the anti-slip surface of outdoor tiles can wear down, creating a risk of slip and fall injuries. This is one of the leading causes of public liability claims for bodies corporate.

Tile cleaning, sealing, polishing and general foot traffic can all contribute to a more slippery tile surface. It is not a good idea to assume that tiles will be compliant, unless they have been recently tested. Insurers are increasingly asking for this type of report too.

For a relatively low cost, the tiles can be inspected and tested using a specialist friction-testing machine. The good news is that if the tiles do not meet the standard, they can usually be treated with an acid-wash to increase the anti-slip properties without changing the look of the tiles and without replacing them. This is also relatively inexpensive considering the benefit.

References: Requirements for CPR and warning signs | Queensland Building and Construction Commission (qbcc.qld.gov.au)

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