VINTON–Many Vinton residents are not aware that there are town ordinances governing backyard swimming pools–in the interests of public safety. Some are aware that in-ground pools require permits, but most above-ground pools of a certain height do as well, including easy-set pools from retailers like Walmart.
According to Karla Turman in Vinton’s Planning and Zoning Department, any pool that has the capacity to hold 24 inches or more of water must have a building permit and a zoning permit.
The pool must also have a proper safety barrier per the International Building Code. Information on what is a proper barrier is available by calling the Roanoke County Building Commissioner at 540-772-2065. Pools 48 inches or higher might serve as their own safety barriers—it’s best to check for confirmation.
If you have a permanent pump, you also need an electrical permit.
If the pool is left up for a length of time, the water must be treated to prevent insects, like mosquitoes which spread diseases, from breeding.
If you are a renter, a letter from the property owner giving you permission to apply for the pool permits is required before the town is able to process the permit application.
Several forms are required in order to apply for a pool permit. The applicant must submit a to-scale plot plan of the property (which can be hand-drawn) which identifies the address of the property, the tax map number, and the property owner’s name. Property boundaries must be identified. There must be a North arrow, the placement of existing structures on the property; the proposed placement of the pool, and the size of the pool in square feet.
Location of related pool equipment must be noted and include the location and size of new decks, railings, etc., which will be built along with the pool.
The distance from each pool side wall to the nearest property boundary line must be identified, the distance between the pool wall closest to the dwelling and the dwelling, the location of water and sewer lines on the property, the location of each driveway which accesses the property, and the streets and alleys that border the property.
If the property is located near a flood plain, the flood plain must be drawn on the plot plan.
In addition, for pre-fabricated pools, the manufacturer’s instructions must be submitted.
Pool information packets and permits may be obtained at the Municipal Building on Pollard Street from the Planning and Zoning Office. You may call Turman, the Code Enforcement Officer, at 540-983-0605 for assistance.