Drowning is ranked among the top five leading causes of injury death in the US. On average, two children (0 – 14 years old) die from drowning and ten more children require emergency medical attention for near-drowning incidents every day.1 In fact, accidental drowning accounts for 30% of all children deaths ages 1-4, the group with the highest drowning rates.1
Sadly, most of these drownings occur in residential swimming pools owned by the family, friends or relatives of the victim.1 While there are many factors that affect the risk of drowning, one stands out more than others: the lack of a Certified pool fence or barrier.
Pool fences, both permanent or removable, are intended to prevent children from accessing the pool area without adult supervision. These fences may vary in construction materials and design, but the current trend leans toward removable fences made of mesh-type materials that are sectionalized by metallic frames. Each fence comes with one self-closing/ self-latching metallic frame gate that opens outwards and the many individual sections to form a complete barrier around the pool.
Industry experts believe that pool fences are one of the most effective preventative measures against drowning. A new pool and spa safety bill, Assembly Bill 470, was recently passed by the California Senate and Assembly and is now being presented to the Governor for his signature. If passed, this bill would supersede the current Swimming Pool Safety Act and require residential pools to have 2 forms of mechanical barrier(s) and/or acoustic alarm(s).
As supported by AB 470, removable/permanent pool fences would need to comply with the requirements of ASTM F2286, “Design and Performance Specification for Removable Mesh Fencing for Swimming Pools, Hot Tubs, and Spas.” Along with this basic Standard, metallic frames may be tested for corrosion protection under ANSI/UL 50E, “Enclosures for Electrical Equipment, Environmental Considerations,” and polymeric frames may be tested for UV and impact resistance under ANSI/UL 746C, “Polymeric Materials – Use in Electrical Equipment Evaluations.”
At UL, we partner with manufacturers to help them navigate through this maze of regulations. UL experts will guide you through the regulations with our simplified Certification process. We can evaluate and test your removable pool fences to these rigorous requirements including, but not limited to, tensile strength, burst strength, weatherability, vertical load and impact. All projects and tests can be done locally in the US with strategic labs located throughout the country. With our specialized staff, we can help get your pool fence UL Certified to ASTM F2286.
It is fast, easy and marketable.
Pool fences that are UL Certified to ASTM F2286 carry a Mark that represents the highest level of integrity, trust, and safety certification in the world and also shows compliance with the pool barrier fencing construction requirements of the International Swimming Pool and Spa Code (ISPSC), and the Uniform Swimming Pool, Spa, and Hot Tub Code (USPSHTC).
Additionally, UL offers Certification to ASTM F1908 “Standard Guide for Fences for Residential Outdoor Swimming Pools, Hot Tubs, and Spas.” ASTM F1908 is geared for permanent fencing systems and provides manufacturers minimum requirements on various critical dimensions such as height, ground clearance, openings, indentations and more.
The UL Mark is North America’s premier Safety Certification Mark. Achieve the UL Mark and confidently set yourselves above your competition. With the UL Mark, your valued customers will know and trust that their pool fence is a life-saving product and that a child’s life is being saved, every day.
1. http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Water-Safety/ waterinjuries-factsheet.html