Austin building code requirements of fence with: closely spaced horizontal members

raskle

New member
Sep 27, 2020
3
Austin, Texas
Hello,

I am building a pool with BYOP in Austin, TX, and I have a question about horizontal fences.
My neighbor has a horizontal cedar fence on one side of our property and the building inspector said this would not pass on the final inspection because of this rule:

R326.2.5 closely spaced horizontal members. The distance between the tops of the horizontal members of a barrier composed of horizontal and vertical members is less than 45 inches, the horizontal members must be located on the pool or spa side of the fence. Vertical members cannot be spaced more than 1- 3/4" in width.

Below is a picture of the fence, note that the section on the right is 8ft tall. Does anyone know how to interpret this rule? I've read it several times and spoke to a couple of local fence contractors and none of them were familiar.

Thanks,
Michael

fence.JPG
 

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
6,351
NY
the horizontal members must be located on the pool or spa side of the fence
The boards have to be on your side, not the neighbors. He would be compliant as it is and you aren’t.
Vertical members cannot be spaced more than 1- 3/4" in width
This part is to keep the planks (going up vertically one above the next) close enough that you can’t climb them like a ladder. It’s much harder to get your shoe tip to grab with a gap of 1 3/4 or less. Yours has zero clearance between planks.
The distance between the tops of the horizontal members of a barrier composed of horizontal and vertical members is less than 45 inches
I *believe* they want posts less than 4 ft apart for structural integrity. So it doesn’t fall over or break if somebody tries to climb it. This one is real fuzzy though
 

TexasRain

Well-known member
May 19, 2020
340
San Antonio, TX
Pool Size
13868
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
The "rule" sounds like it refers to regular old vertical fences. I wonder if there is some kind of exception you could get because there ain't no way somebody climbing that fence easily!
 

raskle

New member
Sep 27, 2020
3
Austin, Texas
Thanks everyone, I did finally get a response on this topic from the city of Austin.

"on February 17th the building official addressed this pool code because of the issues in the way that code is written and horizontal members spacing. As long as there is not more than a ¼” inch gap between the horizontal members there is no longer an issue and the fence will meet the minimum code requirements."