City of San Jose Policy on Single Family Residential Swimming Pool and Spa Safety Enclosures

Policy No.17.28-2-94

Amendment AB 3305

Effective: January 1, 1998


San Jose Municipal Code, Section 17.28 has been amended by Assembly Bill 3305.

The Swimming Pool Safety Act. Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 115920 is added to Chapter 5 of Part 10 of Division 104 of the Health and Safety Code.


Commencing January 1, 1998 every residence containing a swimming pool, hot tub or spa for which a construction permit is issued on or after January 1, 1998 shall comply with this Policy.

REQUIREMENTS - Pool safety enclosures must comply with one of the following

1) The pool shall be isolated from access to a home or from the neighborhood by an enclosure that meets the following requirements:

  1. Any access gates through the enclosure must open away from the swimming pool, and be self-closing with a self-latching device placed no lower than 60 inches above the ground.

  2. A minimum enclosure height of 60 inches.

  3. A maximum vertical clearance from the ground to the bottom of the enclosure of 2 inches.

  4. Gaps or voids, if any, are not to allow passage of a sphere equal to or greater than 4 inches in diameter.

  5. The outside enclosure surface is to be free of protrusions, cavities, or other physical characteristics that would serve as handholds or footholds that could enable a child below the age of five to climb over.

  6. The enclosure shall be located a minimum of four feet (48") from the nearest edge of the pool.)

  7. If the house walls are used as part of the enclosure, doors must comply with one of the following:

    1. The residence shall be equipped with exit alarms on those doors providing direct access to the pool.

    2. All doors providing direct access from the home to the swimming pool shall be equipped with a self-closing, self-latching device with a release mechanism placed no lower than 54 inches above the floor.

2) The pool shall be equipped with an approved safety cover meeting ASTM - F1346-91

3) Other means of protection, if the degree of protection afforded is equal to or greater than that afforded by any of the devises set forth above.

4) Hot tubs or spas with locking covers that comply with ASTM-ES 13-89 are determined to be in compliance.


Swimming Pool - Means any structure intended for swimming or recreational bathing that contains water more than 18 inches deep. "Swimming pool" includes in-ground and above ground structures and includes, but is not limited to, hot tubs, spas, portable spas, and non-portable wading pools.

Public swimming pool - means a swimming pool operated for the use of the public with or without charge, or for the members and guests of a private club.

Enclosure - means a fence, wall, or other barrier that isolates a swimming pool from access to the home.

Approved safety pool cover - means a manually or powered-operated safety pool cover that meets all of the Performance Specifications of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM-F1346-91).

Exit alarms - means devises that make audible, continuous alarm sounds when any door or window, that permits access from the residence to the pool area that is without any intervening enclosure, is opened of is left ajar. Exit alarms may be battery operated or may be connected to the electrical wiring of the building.

Approved by:

Chief Building Official




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