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Pool Safety Latches and Gates

    Another important consideration are the latches and gates that are used on the pool safety fence. Like a chain, a fence is only as strong as it's weakest link, and the gates and latches used on a fence can be just that.

Some safety guidelines regarding pool safety latches and gates:

    - Gates that access the pool area should always swing outward - away from the pool. This prevents (or reduces the chance) that a child may get through the gate by pushing it inward.

    - The gate should be at least as high, or higher than, the surrounding pool safety fence.

    - Gates should be self-closing.

     - Whenever possible, gates that allow access to the swimming pool area should be in full view of the home, so that adults can see anyone who enters through the gate.

    - Although not required by law or local codes, I recommend the use of a gate alarm to alert adults that the gate has been opened. The alarm should sound for a minimum of 30 seconds, and have a distinctive tone to distinguish it from other sounds like door bells or the ringing of a telephone. Several types of gate alarms are available, and they are well worth the money as an additional layer of safety for children in the area.

    - Latches used on gates that access the swimming pool should be installed on the inside, facing the pool.

    - The gate latch should be installed at least 3 inches below the top of the fence (on the inside), if the gate is less than 54" high. This can help to prevent children from reaching over the gate to access the latch.

    - Latches on pool safety gates should be self-latching.

    - There should be no opening in the gate within 18" of the latch, making it difficult for a child to reach through the gate and operate the gate latch.

Professional installation is recommended for all gates and latches around the pool area. Your local professional will be aware of all applicable codes and safety guidelines in your particular area, ensuring that the gates and latches that access your pool are installed in compliance with those rules. 
Now take a moment to learn about different types of Pool Alarms and how they can prevent a tragedy in your swimming pool. 


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