France has the world’s highest rate of infant death by drowning in swimming pools.
All swimming pools have to comply to the following:

Enclosed by a solid fence that is a minimum of 1m20 high; it must not be possible to climb over or under this fence.It must have a childproof lockable self-closing gate.

  • Life rings must be easily accessible and visible.
  • The pool must be alarmed.
  • Life resuscitation (mouth to mouth) first aid instructions must be clearly visible.
  • Telephone numbers of the emergency services must be provided.
  • A safety cover must be provided.
  • All swimming pools will have to have the swimming area lit by .
  • New swimming pools have to comply by these regulations now.

It is also recommended that pools have one depth so that non swimmers can jump in and rescue a child in trouble.
Should a child drown in a pool that does not meet the above regulations owners could face criminal charges of death by negligence plus a 45,000€ fine.
Despite these safety measures, children still drown, so it is important that the dangers of parents turning their backs for even a minute are emphasised to the parents in the strongest possible terms. The best form of security is that at least one adult be responsible at all times for the swimming pool area and or know where all the children are at all times. Should a child drown in a pool whilst the parent(s)/guardian(s) are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, criminal charges are likely to be brought by the French courts.

Make sure that you follow these guidelines to ensure that you are not touched by this kind of tragedy:
You can print the notice below (click here) or order plastic encapsulated versions to put up around your pool and in your property.


  • All children must be accompanied by an adult who can swim at all times.* Never leave the pool area unattended whilst children are in the pool area.
  • The gate must be locked at all times.
  • The responsible adult must be sober.
  • Absolutely no diving.
  • No glasses or bottles in the pool area
  • The pool safety cover must be replaced immediately when the pool is not in use.
  • The pool alarm should be activated before leaving the pool area.
  • Know where your children are at all times.
  • Read the life saving instructions provided now. Do not wait until an accident occurs.
  • Samu – Ambulance Telephone 15
  • Police – Telephone 17
  • Pompiers – Fire Brigade (Para-Medics) Telephone 18

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