Pool ownership is sure to bring laughs, good times and great memories. But with it also comes great responsibility. Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children aged 1 to 4. These sobering statistics aren’t intended to drive homeowners away from pool ownership, but rather raise awareness of the continued need for pool safety. While nothing guarantees that drownings won’t occur, consistently practicing layers of protection will help provide the safest environment possible and help reduce the risk of drowning occurrences. 

One of these layers of protection that is often overlooked is pool fences. Because many pool owners see them as “unsightly” or taking away from the aesthetics of their pool, they forgo what could be a lifesaving barrier for young children. With summer in full swing and the Texas heat showing no signs of letting up, it’s the perfect time to reiterate important safety measures designed to keep children safe in and near the water. 

What Does Drowning Look Like?

Forget everything you’ve seen in the movies because drowning looks nothing like it. Drowning happens within seconds, it is silent and it doesn’t discriminate. While we all want to believe that something of this nature will never happen to us, there is never a guarantee. Yet, if we understand the prevalence of drowning and know successful ways to combat it, then how come it remains a leading cause of death in our children? 

The short answer is complacency. We’re all guilty of thinking the unfathomable can’t happen to us, so we forgo the necessary steps to equip our pools, ourselves and our children with proven layers of protection like fences that can help provide safety of some capacity in dangerous situations or when an unexpected lapse of adult supervision occurs. Did you know that most drownings occur during non-swim times? That means drownings happen when children aren’t even in their swimming suits planning on or already swimming. 

Why Should I Add a Pool Fence?

While barriers are not childproof and should be treated as such, they do add a layer of protection that’s designed to keep children out of the pool if they become unattended. Fences provide adults with more time to find a child before they reach the pool should an unintended lapse in supervision occur. 

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the United States sees an average of 300 drowning deaths yearly. Last year alone, Texas experienced 77 fatal child drownings with the majority happening in a backyard or community pool. While there are no statistics regarding if the pools where the drownings occurred had fences or not, it’s important to remove the “aesthetic” stigma against fences and start normalizing, as well as promoting, proper protection around a pool. 

It’s important to mention that Texas does have laws in place for homes that have pools. In short, Texas requires a 48-inch-high fence to be around a pool or yard with no gaps between the pickets or the ground and the bottom of the fence that are more than 4 inches wide. Be sure to consult your local ordinances for more information about specific requirements. 

So, what makes a fence effective? 

Effective pool fences surround the entire perimeter of the pool and are designed to keep little ones from gaining access to the water. They prohibit kids from getting close to the pool when installed and operated correctly. Fences should also be equipped with self-latching gates. 

Even if a pool has a fence, additional barriers like an alarm should be installed. According to the National Drowning Prevention Alliance, nearly 70 percent of childhood drownings happen during non-swim times. Pools are intriguing to children. They slip by at family gatherings, while they are playing, or when they’re curious. Whether or not they are swimming or even have their swimsuit on preparing to swim, they want to go in. By adding an additional layer like a pool alarm, you’re creating audible and visual alert systems that notify you immediately if there is unexpected access. 

Your McAllen Pool Builder

As a leading pool company in McAllen, the entire team at Hamlin Pools looks forward to bringing your backyard vision to life and creating a space that you and your family will enjoy for many years to come. We remain dedicated to pool safety and encourage all of our clients to keep their pool environment safe in every way possible. 


Since 1952, Hamlin Pools has been a family-owned and operated pool company serving the Rio Grande Valley, including McAllen, Mission, Brownsville, Harlingen, South Padre Island, and Corpus Christi. Hamlin Pools is the largest pool builder south of San Antonio and is proud to have built nearly 4,000 swimming pools for its customers. 

Hamlin Pools is an industry leader combining innovative designs with construction know-how. Through an extensive network built over the past 5 decades of building swimming pools in the Rio Grande Valley, Hamlin Pools has the ability to deliver a better pool at a better price. Hamlin Pools also does pool renovations, pool remodels, outdoor living, custom outdoor kitchens, weekly pool maintenance, pool equipment repair, pool chemical retail sales, and commercial pool construction. 

Hamlin Pools, with its main office Pharr, has received numerous awards for pool design and construction and are members of every major industry group dedicated to upholding high pool construction and service standards. Contact them today about building the backyard of your dreams.