Dewey Case, technical director for the Council for the Model Aquatic Health Code (CMAHC), is featured on aquatics industry podcasts, Pool Pro Podcast and Ask the Masters Podcast, discussing the importance of the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act and its implications today for pool service professionals and builders.
The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act (VGBA) was enacted by Congress and signed by President George W. Bush on December 19, 2007. Designed to prevent the tragic and hidden hazard of drain entrapments and eviscerations in pools and spas, the law became effective on December 19, 2008.
As Case explains in the podcasts, in addition to other requirements, the VGBA requires all covers be compliant with ANSI/ASME A112.19.8 or its successor standard ANSI/APSP-16 2011. This standard requires all approved drain covers be stamped with a “Replace By” timeframe measured in years—commonly between five and seven years and going into effect from the installation date. While the service life of the cover is determined by the manufacturer and not specified in the standard, manufacturers extensively test covers to determine the service life.
“While an important safety initiative, the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act certainly caused ripples in the aquatics industry as venues across the U.S. were required to change or update their drain assemblies,” said Case. “Now, it’s been 12 years since the VGBA went into effect, so pool service professionals and builders must ensure drain covers have been changed and remain compliant.”