Safety Equipment in Texas

Posted on: December 21, 2015
Posted in: Pool Safety
Tags: Pool Safety , CPSP , Pool and Spa Safety Act , Safety Equipment


There is a wide variety of pool safety equipment available to in efforts to reduce drownings in public and residential pools. It is critical to use appropriate safety equipment to ensure the safety of  swimming pools. Paradise Oasis pools only uses Pool & Spa Safety Act(P&SS Act) compliant safety equipment to ensure you can provide the highest level of protection for the public.

All public pools and spas must use compliant drain covers. If a pool has a single main drain other than an unblockable drain, they must be equipped with secondary safety devices or systems designed to prevent entrapment by pool or spa drains and that meet the Act’s requirements.


The technical requirement of the ANSI/ASME A112.19.8 performance standard, or the successor standard ANSI/APSP-16 2011 performance is supported by the CPSC staff, which calls for field-built sumps to have a depth, when measured from the bottom of the cover to the top of the outlet piping, of 1.5 times the diameter of the piping.

However, the P&SS Act does not require pool owners to replace their slump. If a new, compliant drain cover can be safely secured onto a preexisting sump, while properly controlling the flow rate, then it meets the intent of the law.

Drain Covers

All drain covers must be compliant with the ANSI/ASME A112.19.8 performance standard, or the successor standard ANSI/APSP-16 2011. Older covers can be tested against the standards to determine if they comply, or they can be replaced with new compliant drain covers. If covers are field fabricated, then a Registered Design Professional or a licensed professional engineer (PE) must specify the covers meet the ASME/ANSI A112.19.8 standard.

While there is no requirement in the P&SS Act stating that there be a specific marking on drain covers, the CPSC has asked manufacturers to mark them “VGB 2008”, as of November 12, 2008.

A certification document should be provided by the drain cover manufacturer with each drain cover stating that it complies with the requirements of the VGB Act. If there is no marking or you have any doubt, contact the manufacturer and ask for a copy of the certificate.

The ASME standard requires covers to display:

Use—single or multiple

Flow rate GPM

Life or the number of years

Wall and/or floor mount

Manufacturer’s name

Model number

Flow Rates and Single Drains

Drain cover ratings are based on allowable flow in gallons per minute (GPM). To determine maximum flow rate covers are tested in the laboratory, which can result in velocities through the open area of the cover that are greater than 1.5 feet per second (fps).

Generally, the flow for multiple drains is calculated by subtracting one drain (presuming it is blocked) so the total flow through the remaining drains should meet the system requirements. The flow rate calculations for single drain would be:

One drain = total system flow (plus a secondary anti-entrapment system if the single main drain is not unblockable)

Note: The flow-rate calculations are independent of ‘unblockable’.

Safety Devices

In addition to having a compliant drain cover or other anti-entrapment device, public pools and spas with single, blockable main drains must also have additional protections by using one of the following system or devices:

Safety Vacuum Release System

Suction-Limiting Vent System

Gravity Pools

Automatic Pump Shut-off System

Drain Disablement