Inflatable Pool

Swimming Pool Safety & Permit Requirements

No one expects a tragedy to strike them, however, each year nearly 300 children under the age of 5 drown in swimming pools nationwide according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.  In addition, over 2,500 children in that age group are treated annually in hospital emergency rooms for pool submersion injuries – mostly in residential, family-owned swimming pools.  An increasing number of deaths are also occurring in portable inflatable pools commonly purchased at local department stores.  These large inflatable pools are relatively inexpensive and may cost as little as $200.  They often have slanted or flexible sides, which make it easier for children to climb into the pool even without a ladder present.  These pools are often purchased by consumers without considering barriers, such as fencing, necessary to protect young children.

The best safeguard for the prevention of accidental drowning or injuries is to be certain swimming pool installations comply with the City of Warren Zoning Code and Property Maintenance Code as well as the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code regulations.  When considering the purchase and installation of a swimming pool, all homeowners, landlords or tenants, need to be aware that a building permit is required for any swimming pool capable of holding a depth of more than 24 inches of water. 

This includes portable inflatable pools.  If the pool sidewall is less than 48 inches high, a minimum four-foot high barrier or fence with a self-closing, self-latching gate is required.  If the house forms a side of this barrier, alarms on all doors leading to the pool area are required.  Any existing pool is also required to comply with these barrier requirements.  All electrical connections must also be installed to meet electrical code requirements.

If you are planning to have a swimming pool installed on your property or residence this summer, make certain you obtain a building permit before you begin.  If you have an existing permanent or portable swimming pool and do not have a valid building permit, you will need to obtain a permit before you will be permitted to use your pool this summer.  In addition to these swimming pool requirements, a building permit must also be obtained for the installation of any hot tub or spa. 

Building permit applications and informational brochures may be obtained at the Department of Zoning, Codes, and Economic Development,  318 West Third Avenue during normal business hours.  If you have any questions regarding swimming pool safety or the permit process, contact the Department at (814) 723-6300 Ext. 116.