Swimming Pool Fence

Swimming Pool Fence Code

swimming pool fencing code

This is a general overview of the Georgia swimming pool fence code and may not apply to your local county codes. Please check with your local City Hall Zoning Dept. and ask about the pool code laws and regulations as they may vary from the  B.O.C.A. or I.B.C. standards.

Pool safety is a major concern; drowning in pools is still one of the greatest causes—and in some years, the #1 cause—of accidental death in children under 5 years old in the US.

The most important codes are these:

pool safety checklist
  1. Gate and fence height no less than 48.
  2. Gap between vertical members no more than 4.
  3. Gap under bottom member no more than 4.
  4. Release mechanism of the self-latching device shall be located no less than 54 from the finish floor or ground.
  5. Self-closing hinges positioned, so the gate opens outward, away from the pool.
  6. Distance between any horizontal members more than 45 apart; if the lower hinge is positioned within the area, use a dedicated safety cap (see number 6 at right) to prevent the hinge barrel from being used as a foothold for toddlers.

Objects Outside of the Fence:

Please keep in mind when installing a pool fence that any objects within 48" of the fence, on the outside of the fence ( pool pumps, deck,  lights, large rocks, retaining walls, etc.), could technically be used as a step, creating easy access to the pool area.

These codes are in place with the frame of mind to keep people from getting into the pool area, not getting out.

A pool fence must be at least 48" tall

For the Ornamental Wrought Iron style fence, the minimum distance between the bottom rail and the next existing horizontal rail must be at least 45" ( see diagram ). Most 3-horizontal rail fence styles must be either 54" or 60" depending on the particular fence style and manufacturer.

A 2-rail ornamental fence with a finished height of 48" is available on special order.

48-inch tall chain link fence with a tight 1-1/4 inch fabric weave is acceptable for pool enclosures.


Ornamental Pool Fence:

  • Distance between vertical pickets must be less than 4".
  • Space between the bottom of the fence and the ground must be less than 4".

Chain Link:

  • If you choose a chain link fence for your pool enclosure, a tightly woven 1-1/4 inch mesh chain link fence fabric is required.


swimming pool gate detain
  • Gates to have a minimum height of 48 from the finish floor or ground.
  • Maximum ground clearance between the bottom of the fence and the ground is 4.
  • To prevent a finger crush, the gap between the gate and post is no less than ½; otherwise, a safety covering guard is required.
  • Single-leaf pedestrian access gates shall open outward, away from the play environment, be self-closing, and have a self-latching device. 
  • The release mechanism of the self-latching device must be located no less than 54 from the finish floor or ground.

Ornamental Decorative Fence Code detail:

Swimming Pool Fence Code
Swimming Pool Fence Code Requirement Clarification
swimming pool chain link fence
Chain Link Pool Fence

Chain Link Fence is another excellent swimming pool enclosure solution and is available in a tight 1-1/4 inch weave that meets pool code requirements.

The tight weave prevents a child from getting a foothold, hampering them from climbing over.

chain link pool fencing
Example of a non-code compliant fence

A chain link fence is an affordable swimming pool fence that meets code requirements if the fence fabric is a special tight 1-1/4 inch weave as pictured in the 4 ft. tall black vinyl coated chain link fence above.

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