Summary Analysis of the Viginia Graeme Baker
Virginia Graeme Baker
Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act of Orange County, CA
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Summary Analysis of the
Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act (Act) promotes the safe use of pools, spas and hot tubs by imposing mandatory federal requirements for suction entrapment avoidance and by establishing a voluntary grant program for states with laws that meet certain minimum requirements as outlined in the Act. Effective December 20, 2007, the Act is being administered by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
1. Mandatory Federal Requirements for Entrapment Avoidance. By December 20, 2008, the Act requires:
ANSI/APSP-7 Standard Exceeds Federal Requirements.All pools and spas configured to comply with ANSI/APSP–7 American National Standard for Suction Entrapment Avoidance in Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, Spas, Hot Tubs, and Catch Basins will comply with each of these mandatory requirements
2. Voluntary Grant Program for States. The CPSC will also establish and administer a grant program for eligible states. A sum of $2 million is authorized to be appropriated to the CPSC for each of the fiscal years 2009 and 2010. In order to be eligible for a grant, a state must impose certain requirements by statute, including:
New. Each pool and spa built more than one year after enactment of the state statute shall employ one of the following:
1. The installation of more than one safety drain per suction system, or
2. The installation of one or more unblockable drains, or
3. No drains.
Existing. In addition to a compliant drain cover, each pool or spa with a single main drain, other than an unblockable drain, shall be equipped with one or more of the following safety options — a safety vacuum release system (SVRS), or suction limiting vent system, or gravity drainage system, or automatic pump shut-off system, or drain disablement, or other system determined by the CPSC to be equally effective in preventing suction entrapment.
· Funding. The grant program directs state recipients to use grant funding to:
ANSI/APSP-7 Standard Exceeds Federal Requirements. All pools and spas configured to comply with the ANSI/APSP-7 Standard will conform to these provisions and any state that adopts the Standard will meet the Act’s minimum state requirements.
This ANSI/APSP-7 Standard is the only comprehensive approach to engineering swimming pools and spas to avoid all five suction entrapment hazards: hair entrapment, limb entrapment, body suction entrapment, evisceration/disembowelment, and mechanical entrapment. The design requirements and construction practices in this Standard are based upon sound engineering principles, research, and field experience that, when applied properly, provide for a safe installation that exceeds the requirements of the Act.
3. Public Safety Education: The Act requires the CPSC to establish and carry out a public education program on methods to prevent drowning and entrapment in pools and spas. $5 million is authorized to be appropriated for each of the fiscal years 2008-2012 to carry out the education program.