Public and private pools operate under North Carolina (NC) swimming pool regulations. While the two types of NC pool regulations have slightly different rules, there are many similarities. The intent of all NC pool codes is to provide a safe environment for swimmers of all ages. Many pool regulations aim specifically to protect younger children who are most attracted to the sounds of splashing in a swimming pool.
North Carolina swimming pool codes require that water flowing into public swimming pools must be fresh and potable from approved public water supply sources. This includes water from any drinking fountains as well as showers and toilets. The rules allow exceptions for salt-water pools and pools filled with water from other, approved sources. The water supplied to residential pools must also come from an approved source of clean water. Waste water, including drained pool water, sewage and water used in the pool's cleaning, must have a direct line to the public sewage system if it's a public pool. Waste water from home pools should drain into the public sewage system as well if possible. In locations where the pool doesn't have access to a public sewage system, the water must drain into approved drainage ditches and not into the home's septic system.
Public and private swimming pools must meet NC pool regulations regarding inspections. Building permits are necessary for all pool-building activities. Licensed plumbers and electricians must do all work on public or residential pool installations. Any time the value of a pool is more than $30,000, a licensed contractor must be in charge of building it. Safety inspections make sure the water is safe for swimming and that safety equipment, such as life vests and rescue hooks, are in place. Safety inspectors also make sure that swimming pool drains have anti-entrapment devices on them.
NC pool codes require that all below ground swimming pools, public or private, have fencing at least four feet tall around them. Regardless of the type of fencing, the openings should not be any larger than four inches. If chain link fencing serves as the barrier, the openings in the chain link should be no larger than 2 1/4-inches across. Gates must be self-latching and must unlatch from the inside of the pool area. The pool fencing should not allow any access from children climbing over it.
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