Town of Bethany Beach, DE
Sussex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Bethany Beach 3-16-1985 by Ord. No. 145; amended in its entirety 7-15-2005 by Ord. No. 396 (Ch. 207 of the 1992 Code). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building construction — See Ch. 395.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 475.
Water and sewers — See Ch. 516.
Zoning — See Ch. 425.

§ 500-1 Definitions:

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ABANDONED
Any condition of neglect evidencing a lack of use, maintenance, or repair for such period of time (not less than 60 days) as to indicate an intention to make no further use of the pool.
[1]
BARRIER
A fence, wall, building wall or a combination thereof, which completely surrounds the swimming pool and obstructs access to the swimming pool.
POOL DEPTHS
The distance between the floor of the pool and the maximum operating level.
PRIVATE POOLS
Any indoor or outdoor artificial basin containing a body of water, which is used for swimming, wading, diving, recreative bathing, or other aquatic purposes and is not open to the general public, or a limited section of the public, but is intended strictly for the use of the beneficial owner(s) and his or her or their family and/or guests.
PUBLIC POOLS
Any indoor or outdoor artificial basin constructed of concrete, metal, fiberglass or any nontoxic, impervious and structurally rigid approved materials, which contains a body of continuously recirculated and filtered water with automatic disinfecting which is used for swimming, wading, diving, recreative bathing, or other aquatic purposes and is open to either the general public, or a limited section of the public, with or without a fee. These regulations do not apply to pools that are used by one person at a time and whose water is completely changed after each patron.
SPA or HOT TUB
A pool containing water greater then 95° F. which is not emptied after each use, has a maximum depth of four feet, is large enough for the immersion of at least one person and may have a high velocity air and/or water jet system.
[2]
SWIMMING POOLS
Any structure intended for swimming, wading, diving, recreative bathing or other aquatic purposes that contains water over 24 inches deep. This includes in-ground, aboveground, or a combination thereof, and on-ground swimming pools and spas.
WADING POOLS
Are considered temporary pools if made of plastic, light metal, or other light duty materials which do not exceed a full volume depth of 24 inches at the lowest point. Wading pools whose design does not provide for continuously recirculated and filtered water, should be emptied when not in use or at a minimum at the end of each day. Wading pools are exempt from the provisions of Chapter 425, Zoning.
[1]
Editor's Note: Added at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).

§ 500-2 Standards adopted; amendments.

A. 
The Standard Swimming Pool Code, 1999 Edition, and any subsequent editions, is hereby adopted with the following deletions and additions:
(1) 
Delete the text of Section 105.4 in its entirety and add: "the cost of a permit to construct a swimming pool shall be as shown in the current, approved schedule of fees."
(2) 
Add the following to Section 315: "No building or structure which would impede egress from the water shall be located less than five feet from the water's edge around the entire perimeter of the water in the pool."
B. 
Permanent swimming pools, whether above, below or ground, are required to meet the zoning district requirements with respect to lot coverage, and are considered impervious structures.
C. 
Building, electrical, and plumbing permits are required for the installation, alteration, repair or remodeling of all pools not exempt from Chapter 425, Zoning, and must meet the code requirements of all applicable Town ordinances.
D. 
Approved circulators and filtration systems must be provided for all pools except wading pools.
E. 
Elevated outdoor lighting, if used, shall be installed with glare shields and not directed toward adjacent property owners.
F. 
Water contained in swimming pools must be kept healthy and sanitary at all times, and shall not emit an offensive odor that creates a nuisance or unhealthy condition.
G. 
For outdoor pools, any overhead wiring not inside an electrical conduit shall not pass over any part of the deck or an area within 20 feet of the nearest edge of the pool.
H. 
Abandoned pools must be removed or appropriately filled and covered under ground.
I. 
Aboveground pools may be installed without a survey if permitted by the Code Enforcement Officer. In-ground pools require an engineered plot plan with grading approved by the Building Inspector.

§ 500-3 Private swimming pools.

A. 
Swimming pools shall:
(1) 
Be located on a lot on which is situated a principal residential building.
(2) 
Be located so that the distance from the water's edge to the side and rear lot line is not less than the building setback line as required by Chapter 245, Zoning.
(3) 
Not be permitted in the front yard or within approved swale or stormwater management systems, as defined in Chapter 245, Zoning.
B. 
No part of a swimming pool, including but not limited to decks, aprons, mechanical equipment buildings, and bath houses, which is 12 inches or more above grade of the lot shall be located within the yard areas, as defined in Chapter 425, Zoning.
C. 
A swimming pool, no part of which is 24 inches or less above the grade of the lot, shall not be considered in calculating lot coverage. For the purpose of this chapter, the "lot grade" shall be that area of the lot on which the pool is situated within 20 feet of the water's edge of the pool.

§ 500-4 Public pools.

Public pools, as defined by the Swimming Pool Code, shall be approved by the Bethany Beach Planning Commission. All public pools are regulated by the State of Delaware, Regulations Governing Public Pools, Section 26 of the State Code.

§ 500-5 Spas.

Spas shall meet the same requirements as private swimming pools.

§ 500-6 Drainage.

Swimming pools must be discharged according to guidelines established by The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). In no event may water from a swimming pool be discharged into a public street or stormwater management system, nor shall any discharge be directed onto any adjoining property.

§ 500-7 Barrier requirements.

A. 
Applicability. The provisions of this section shall control the design of barriers for private, public, semi-public pools, spas and hot tubs. These design controls are intended to provide protection against potential drownings and near-drownings by restricting access to swimming pools, spas and hot tubs.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
B. 
Outdoor swimming pool. An outdoor swimming pool, including an in-ground, aboveground, or on-ground pool, hot tub or spa shall be provided with a barrier, which shall comply with the following:
(1) 
Private swimming pools. The height of the fence constructed which encloses the pool located on a single-family lot in the R-1 or R-2 Zoning District shall be four feet, six inches in height, the maximum vertical clearance between grade and the bottom of the fence is two inches, openings in the fence shall not allow passage of a four-inch diameter sphere and shall be constructed a minimum of three feet from the edge of the pool so as to provide an area for ingress and egress. Such fences shall be within the required setback areas as provided in the Table of Dimensional Requirements in Chapter 245. All such fences are to be chain link, stockade wood or material of equal quality.
(2) 
Public pools. The height of the fence constructed which encloses a public or semi-public pool shall not exceed eight feet in height and not be less then four feet, six inches in height, the maximum vertical clearance between grade and the bottom of the fence is two inches, openings in the fence shall not allow passage of a four-inch diameter sphere and shall be constructed a minimum of five feet from the edge of the pool so as to provide an area for ingress and egress. Such fences shall be within the required setback areas as provided in the Table of Dimensional Requirements in Chapter 425. All such fences are to be chain link, stockade wood or material of equal quality.
(3) 
Spas. Spas with a securable safety cover shall be exempt from the above fencing provisions.
(4) 
Gates. Access gates for all outdoor pools shall open outward away from the pool and shall be self-closing and have a self-latching device. Where the release mechanism of the self-latching device is located less than 54 inches from the bottom of the gate, the release mechanism and openings shall comply with the following:
(a) 
The release mechanism shall be located on the pool side of the gate at least three inches from the top of the gate.
(b) 
The gate and barrier shall have no opening greater than 0.5 inch within 18 inches of the release mechanism.
(5) 
Aboveground pools. Where an aboveground pool structure is used as a barrier or where the barrier is mounted on the top of the pool structure, and the means of access is a ladder or steps, then the ladder or steps shall be capable of being secured, locked or removed to prevent access.
(6) 
Indoor and outdoor pools. Where a wall of a dwelling serves as part of the barrier, one of the following conditions shall be met:
(a) 
The pool shall be equipped with a powered safety cover.
(b) 
All doors with direct access to the pool through the wall shall be equipped with an audible warning when the door and its screen, if present, are opened. The alarm shall sound continuously for a minimum of 30 seconds immediately after the door is opened and be capable of being heard throughout the house during normal household activities.

§ 500-8 Violations and penalties. [1]

Any person or entity convicted of violating any of the regulatory provisions of this chapter shall pay a fine as set out in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article I, Penalties.
[1]
Editor's Note: Added at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).