Virginia Graeme Baker Pool And Spa Safety Act
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool And Spa Safety Act is a United States law named after the daughter of Nancy and James Baker and the granddaughter of former Secretary of State James Baker III. Graeme Baker died in a tragic incident in June 2002 when the suction from a spa drain entrapped her under the water. This Act was first introduced by Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL) and was supported by the Baker family and Safe Kids Worldwide.
Consumer Product Safety Commission staff began investigating reported incidents of swimming pool/spa suction entrapment incidents in the 1970s. Such incidents included entrapment of hair, body, limb, evisceration or disembowelment and mechanical entrapment of jewelry or bathing suits. From 1999-2007 for all age categories records were examined. In 2007, for all age categories, there were 74 reports of circulation entrapments. Individuals in the 5-9 year-old category had the highest frequency of entrapment reports.
The goals of the VGBA were: to enhance the safety of public and private pools and spas, to reduce child drownings, to reduce the number of suction entrapment incidents, injuries and deaths; and to educate the public on the importance of constant supervision of children in and around water.
There is a Federal requirement for public pools that preempts the state or local law, as of Dec. 19, 2008. and further regulations are in addition to it:
A pool contractor should verify that the pool and / or spa is in compliance with the federally mandated Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act which takes effect December 19, 2008. If the pool is not in compliance, the necessary steps should be taken to comply with the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act, that, in essence, specifies that:
Compliant drain covers
The VGBA requires all drain covers to either be manufactured products or to be field fabricated outlets , in each case meeting the specific technical requirements of the act and having the necessary certification.
These are used in conjunction with an approved main drain cover and skimmer. They come in 3 main varieties:
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