Dr Mark Stokes, President Kidsafe, Mobile; 0408 038 267
Ron Smith, Corporate Media Communications, Kidsafe, Mobile 0417 329 201
Guy Britt, Life Saving Victoria, Mobile, 0411 193 962.
Monday 1st Nov 2010
Dont Gamble with Your Childs Life: Check the Pool Gate before the horses bolt!
Kidsafe Victoria and Life Saving Victoria have highlighted the importance of pool safety for toddlers on the eve
of Melbourne Cup, a day where many Australians gamble with a bet on the horses.
Dont Gamble With Your Childs Life: Check the Pool Gate before the horses bolt is the message for
parents and home owners on Cup Day, who are urged to use this time to ensure the pool gate and fence are
in good condition and operating properly.
Dr Mark Stokes President of Kidsafe Victoria and Guy Britt from Life Saving Victoria said the safety of pool
gates and fencing was a daily issue.
Dr Stokes said, The winter weather and rain can lull people into a false sense of security as people mainly
think about swimming pools and their safety in summer- however often this can be too late.
Many homeowners aren't aware that significant weather events, like the summer storms that are common
across Australia, may weaken the pool fence. So after storms you should do a thorough check to make sure
nothing has come loose."
In 2008-09 in Australia, 33 children under five drowned- of these, almost 50% lost their lives in a backyard
This can occur because the fence gate either wasn't properly secured or toddlers were able to find a way
through gaps. These gaps can emerge as a result of wear-and-tear that homeowners either hadn't noticed or
had put off repairing, advised Mr Britt.
A fully functional fence and self-closing gate, along with vigilant adult supervision are the best ways to prevent
Dr Stokes said, Pool fencing should be checked regularly to ensure it isn't climbable and is in good repair.
Make sure there are no loose palings and no gaps under or through the fence.
Both Kidsafe and Life Saving Victoria encourage all home owners to download the pool fencing checklist from
http://www.homepoolsafety.com.au and check their pool gate and fence before the big race on Cup Day.