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Virginia Graeme Baker (VGB)
Pool & Spa Safety Act


The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act was introduced into legislation by U.S. Rep Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida after Virginia Graeme Baker, a 7 year old drown in a hot tub after being trapped underwater by a powerful suction of a hot tub drain. Graeme, as she was known, was a member of her community swim team and a proficient swimmer from the age of three. She was the granddaughter of Secretary of State James Baker III.

The Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act included in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 as Title XIV and enacted by Congress and signed by President Bush on December 19, 2007. Its primary design was to decrease the amount of infant drownings caused by hot tubs and pool drains. This law became effective on December 19, 2008.

The VGB Act, which currently governs commercial or public pools, spas, and waterparks and pertains to two primary issues:

1. The manufacturing, import, and sale of suction outlet/drain fittings and covers.
2. Entrapment avoidance systems in public pools and spas.


The VGB Act requires the following:

1. On or after 12.19.2008, all suction outlet fittings and covers made, imported or sold in the United States must be certified to comply with ASME/ANSI A 112.19.8, 2007 version.

2. As of 12.19.2008, all public pools and spas, both new and existing, be equipped with certified covers on every suction outlet.

3. As of 12.19.2008, every public pool and spa, new and existing, that has a single outlet, other than an unblockable outlet, must employ one or more of the following additional options:

  • Safety vacuum release system (SVRS) that complies with ANSI/ASME A112.19.17 or ASTM F2387; or

  • Suction limiting vent system; or

  • Gravity drainage system; or

  • Automatic pump shut-off; or

  • Drain disablement; or

  • Equivalent system that may be approved by the CPSC.


Within the pool and spa industry, this act is commonly referred to as being "VGB compliant" or "VGB compliance".


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