The Sport and Recreation Ministers' Council, comprising federal, state and territory ministers, last week agreed to develop nationally consistent home pool legislation in a bid to cut rising drowning rates.
Royal Life Saving chief executive Rob Bradley said inconsistent and inadequate home pool fencing laws and compliance had cost hundreds of young lives in the past 10 years.
He said more than 150 children aged under four years had drowned during in the last five years, with half of those deaths occurring in backyard pools.
'There is massive confusion amongst pool owners, local councils, real estate agents, manufacturers and equipment suppliers and installers about which parts of current legislation apply to their local area,' Mr Bradley said.
About 85 per cent of home pools are either not fenced at all or are non-compliant with safety requirements.
Mr Bradley said a national law would have the biggest impact on drowning figures in 20 years and would reduce the statistics dramatically.
'This is an excellent result and will help save many young lives in the future,' he said.
Royal Life Saving would work with the ministers' committee to come up with the national legislation, Mr Bradley said.
Overall, there were 314 drowning deaths across Australia in 2009/10, the highest number in seven years.
Source: Sky News