On July 1, 2021, new stricter safety rules for residential swimming pools came into force. If you have a pool, make sure you comply with them. The issue is safety, especially for the youngest bathers.
What has changed?
Safety rules, especially to control children’s physical access to residential pools, have been in force since 2010. Until recently, owners of pools built before November 1, 2010, were exempted. However, now they will lose this vested right. If their yard does not comply, they have two years to bring it up to code.
For example, the following pools must have an enclosure:
The enclosure must be:
Among the new rules, chain-link enclosures (or fences) more than 30 mm in width must be slatted.
Due to the recent changes, there must be a clearance zone of 1 m around the outside of the enclosure. The zone must not contain any equipment (play structure, for example) that could be used by someone to climb over the enclosure.
New rules also apply to diving boards. If you want to install a board, you will have to comply with the shapes and measurements prescribed for ensuring safety.
To find out more
See the Sécurité des piscines résidentielles section of the Ministère des Affaires municipales et de l’Habitation (MAMH) website.
The Québec Ombudsman does not have jurisdiction regarding enforcement of the rules governing pools. Note that it is municipalities that issue permits for the construction of pools or enclosures.
MAMH is responsible for the Residential Pool Safety Regulation. If you are having problems with MAMH, feel free to contact the Québec Ombudsman. Our services are user-friendly, confidential and free.