Electricity easements

Swimming pools near Ausgrid assets and easements


What is an electricity easement?

An electricity easement provides 'right of way' for Ausgrid to access, maintain and repair powerlines and substations on private property. While ownership of the land remains with the property, certain restrictions may apply to how the land can be used.

Can I build or erect a pool in an electricity easement?

The construction of swimming pools within electricity easements is only permitted in very limited circumstances due to the risk of electric shock. A local council building permit is not sufficient approval. Written approval from Ausgrid is required.

You can find out more about electricity easement clearance distances in the Quick Reference Guide: Working near Ausgrid Assets - Clearances.

Pool design and installation considerations

Access rights

  • You must provide a continuous, unobstructed area of 4.5 meters wide along the full length of the easement to allow our staff access to powerlines and other equipment at all times.
  • You must not place obstructions in the easement within 5 metres of a powerline, equipment or support wire, or within 10 metres of a steel power line structure.  If you would like to determine the height of powerlines, please contact us.

Electrical installations

  • Have the wiring to your pool pump checked for correct installation.
  • Where a boundary fence makes up part of the pool enclosure, an isolation section (e.g. timber fence) may be required to be installed.
  • Keep any electrical equipment well clear of the pool and out of the easement, including yard lighting (an isolating transformer may be used if supply is required).
  • Underwater lighting should only be of the extra low voltage type.
  • Use plastic piping to connect any water taps within the pool area to the water supply.

Minimise the risk of shocks

  • Have the pool surrounded by timber decking or pavers. These can help to reduce the risk from currents passing through the ground near pools.
  • Avoid using metallic objects around the pool as much as possible - for example portable pool ladders, removable slippery dips. Where possible, use fibreglass or plastic items.

Safety risks of pools in easements

An electrical fault on powerlines may occur if lightning strikes the line, or when part of network becomes damaged or faulty. When a fault happens, part of the electric current flows through the ground and this may electricity the ground for a short period. The closer the pool is to a tower or pole, the greater the risk of electric shock.

If you see fallen or damaged powerlines always assume they are live and never approach them - stay at least 8 metres or 2 car lengths away - and call us on 13 13 88 and report life threatening situations by calling 000.

Staying safe when using a pool located near the electricity network

In order to minimise the risk of electric shock when using pools located close to the electricity network;

  • avoid swimming when bad weather is forecast. Lightning strikes and equipment faults are more likely in bad weather
  • do not use pool cleaners with long handles where there is a risk of them touching overhead powerlines
  • keep trees clear of power lines. Plant only suitable species. If a fallen branch hits a overhead powerline DON’T TOUCH IT – keep well clear and call Ausgrid on 13 13 88
  • never use an extension cable or power board near the pool. A splash from the pool can cause electrical shock.  Eliminating the use of electrical equipment from around the pool area will reduce the risk of electrical accidents from occurring.

How do I know if my pool is in an easement?

If your pool is directly below powerlines or within 40m of a transmission tower, please complete an enquiry form so that the situation can be assessed.