Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 29

"When it comes to pool fencing, the gate
is the weakest link in restricting access to
pools by young children," Barrera explains.
"Low-quality or poorly maintained gates,
latches and hinges can fail-and older children often prop gates open, leaving curious
toddlers vulnerable."
Gates, she says, should always open outward-away from the pool-and latches,
which she notes should be self-latching and
lockable, are a key element.
"[Latches] should be un-climbable-no
foot- or hand-holds and the height of its
release mechanism should adhere strictly to
local codes. It should not be open-able using
implements, shaking or jolting and should
latch from any position, including if it's just
resting on the mechanism."
D&D actually knows quite a bit about
latch technology. Back in 1988, one of the
company's owners-David Doyle-was
watching a science program about "rare
earth" magnets, which never lose their
magnetic force.
"Devising a latching mechanism around
this idea, using materials that would eliminate the possibility of rust or lock-jams,
the first MagnaLatch was born. It was the
first-ever magnetic pool safety gate latch,"
Barrera explains.
Since then, the Magna-Latch has
evolved into a family of latches-even
one that combines its latch-ability with an
electronic alarm.

Everyone wants their pool fence to be
attractive as well as effective, and Jeff
Schulz, general manager of Fortress Fence
Products in Garland, Texas, understands
all too well.
"It all comes down to home- or projectowner preference," he explains. "Many people are required to have a fence if they have
a pool, often after that, they've got to check
with an HOA about what types of fencing
they're permitted to install-but if it's open,
they've got free reign."
What's nice about ornamental fence, he
notes, is visualization. Schultz himself lives
on a large, open piece of property. "Where
others may be closer to their neighbors, privacy is more important-PVC, wood or the
growing line of composites could be what
they are looking for. On a zero-lot-line, this

makes sense. We have an acre, so that open
feeling you achieve with ornamental is more
what we're looking for."
Ironically, the fence was already in place
when the home was purchased; he didn't
even give himself business for the project!
Different panels serve different purposes
but Fortress staffers do encourage their customers, particularly commercial clients, to
consider commercial-grade fencing.
"The difference is coatings," he explains.
"Base material should be galvanized steel.
We use a G60 galvanization on our residential and commercial products. Then there's a
treatment process that follows galvanization:
zinc phosphate rinse. It basically scarifies
the material-etches it-so the subsequent
coatings really hold. After that, we recommend something that really separates the
high-quality manufacturers from those who
are not: E-coat."
E-coat (or electrodeposition coating) was
first conceived in the 1950s when scientists
for Ford Motor Company looked to develop
a process for coating automobiles, making
them less susceptible to the elements. It has
since come a long way.
E-coat molecularly bonds to the steel,
Schulz explains. "And on top of this goes
an architectural grade powder coat where
the UV inhibitors are housed-you won't
have to worry about the product fading
in sunlight."
It's especially nice in places like Texas,
Arizona, Florida-even Denver, where high
elevation makes the sun strong.
While materials can make a huge difference when it comes to fence appearance and
longevity, neither of these things counts for
much without proper installation by an AFA
member or Certified Fence Professional.
"The basic recommendation is that you're
going to want to have your pickets spaced
less than four inches apart," says Schulz, "but
the biggest thing you want to look at from
a security standpoint is your rail spacing.
The ICC pool code mandates that spacing
between the bottom rail of the panel and
the next closest rail must be a minimum of
45.5 inches."
This way, the rail spacing is wide enough
to prevent them from being used like
a ladder.
Also important is that while the ICC pool
code is comprehensive, it is superseded by
more local codes.
www.americanfenceassociation.com | 29 | May/June 2017

"So if you go to places such as Washington
state, California, Oregon-their spacing is
different; it requires more than 45.5 inches.
A state law would trump a national law. And
a local law-county or parish-would trump
state. Whoever's code is most stringent is
the one you're going to want to follow,"
Schulz advises.

Many AFA members-D&D Technologies included-along with other relevant organizations, have chosen to partner
with Pool Safely: Simple Steps to Save Lives
in order to help spread the organization's
message, which works nationwide to spread
the message of pool safety in the hope of
saving lives.
"We are honored to have become
campaign safety leaders," says Barrera.
"As founding fathers of the National
Drowning Prevention Alliance, joining forces with Pool Safely was a natural
fit. We are looking forward to promoting pool safety alongside the Consumer
Product Safety Commission and their Pool
Safety Campaign."
D&D recommends layers of protection
around a pool; they call the process "The
A. Adult supervision (Barrera is quick to
note that no fence can replace this.)
B. Barriers of protection (installing compliant fencing and gates around the
pool perimeter.)
C. CPR: learn it!
And additionally: education-teaching
children swimming and survival skills and
to follow safety rules around pools.

Schulz recommends fence professionals
keep an eye on composites.
"There are multiple composite manufacturers in the market today, and the
products have really come a long way,"
he notes. "When they were first released,
there were multiple issues with fading
or quality of product, but in the last 10
to 15 years, there have been tremendous
It's something he says AFA members
should look into adding to the mix if they
haven't already.
Happy installing! ■


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fencepost - May/June 2017

Editor’s Note
Executive Director’s Message
President’s Message
Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Mistaken Identity: A Story of Cedar
Safety First
Minding Your Business
Class Act: AFA Education Foundation Bestows Seven Scholarships
Health Plan Checkup: Ensuring Your Benefits Program Is the Picture of Health
The Road More Traveled: 811 Car and 811 Bike Recognized as Damage Prevention Icons
New Members
The 811 Across Texas Public Awareness Campaign
Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Intro
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover1
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover2
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 4
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 5
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 6
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 7
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 8
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 9
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 10
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 11
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 12
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Editor’s Note
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 14
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Executive Director’s Message
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 16
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - President’s Message
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 18
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Board of Directors | Board of Governors
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Fencelines
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 21
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Mistaken Identity: A Story of Cedar
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 23
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 24
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 25
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 26
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Safety First
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 28
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 29
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 30
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Minding Your Business
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 32
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 33
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Class Act: AFA Education Foundation Bestows Seven Scholarships
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 35
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 36
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Safety
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Health Plan Checkup: Ensuring Your Benefits Program Is the Picture of Health
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 39
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 40
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 41
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 42
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - CLFMI
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 44
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - The Road More Traveled: 811 Car and 811 Bike Recognized as Damage Prevention Icons
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 46
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - New Members
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 48
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - The 811 Across Texas Public Awareness Campaign
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 50
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Calendar
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 52
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - FenceSense
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 54
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 55
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 56
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 57
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 58
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 59
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 60
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - 61
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - Index to Advertisers
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - cover4
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert1
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert2
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert3
Fencepost - May/June 2017 - outsert4