I understand from talking with some senior plan-checkers here that California is now enforcing the new 2006 IBC (2007 CBC) building code and that requires a soils report for all retaining walls. Walls over a certian height will need to be designed for seismic earth pressures in addition to the normal static earth loads. San Diego is interpreting this as retaining walls 6 feet and taller and IS enforcing this for pools deeper than 6 feet.
Seems crazy that [ a ] pool now needs a soils report (I might be able to grasp the logic in this in some cases) and has to be designed for earthquakes. With counteracting water pressure and the natural strength of the shape (return walls and/or circular) I can't see an earthquake having any effect on an in-ground pool -- and I'm in the building design industry. It would have to be a perfect storm of pool shape, no water in it, and -- to actually have a life/safety risk -- people in this empty pool. Maybe this is to protect the skate-boarders!
I got my pool permit a few weeks before these requirements came into effect on Jan 2, 2008. Is there anybody else in California (or elsewhere) that can shed some light on this? Have you seen this required? This has the opportunity to add a load of time and $$ to the front-end of any deeper pool build.
I hope they change their minds..... or do not enforce this as they have told me they would....