New Codes of Practice for Water Safety in Singapore to Cultivate a Safer Aquatic Sport Environment
Joint Media Release between Sport Singapore and the Singapore Standards Council
The newly launched Aquatic Facilities and Inland and Open Water Sporting Activities guidelines outline best practices among popular water sports.
Singapore, 25 January 2024 – Sport Singapore (SportSG) and the Singapore Standards Council (SSC), which is overseen by Enterprise Singapore (EnterpriseSG), have set out more robust guidelines for safer aquatic sporting environments in response to the rising popularity of aquatic sports. Organisations vested in aquatic sports and fitness, and those managing aquatic facilities, are encouraged to adopt the new guidelines to support and enhance aquatic sport safety standards.
The launch of the new guidelines under the Singapore Standard (SS) 700:2023 Code of Practice for Water Safety – Aquatic Facilities and SS 701:2023 Code of Practice for Inland and Open Water Sporting Activities, was graced by Mr Eric Chua, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth & Ministry of Social and Family Development. Industry stakeholders including representatives from SportSG, Enterprise Singapore, schools and Institutions of Higher Learning, event organisers, National Sports Associations, and other government agencies were also in attendance.
The newly launched Singapore Standards were developed by Working Groups comprising representatives from the public and private sectors, and through public consultation to gather feedback from the industry. Appointed by the Singapore Standards Council, the Working Groups advised on the guidelines, and ensured that the recommendations were tailored to effectively address the risks associated with sporting activities at aquatic facilities as well as in inland and open waters.
They also build on earlier standards developed by SportSG and the Singapore Standards Council. The SS 700:2023 Code of Practice for Water Safety – Aquatic Facilities is updated with additional safety considerations for shallow water blackouts and prolonged breath-holding, while the SS 701:2023 Code of Practice for Inland and Open Water Sporting Activities set out requirements for users to exercise safety practices and precautions, particularly pertaining to water safety requirements for common inland and open water sporting activities in Singapore.
Chief of ActiveSG, Sport Singapore, Mr Tan Hock Leong said, “We see a growing demand for aquatic sports among Singaporeans, hence it is imperative to uphold stringent levels of safety. Our new COPs are designed to help improve our understanding of water safety while engaging in aquatic sports.”
“Whether you are an event organiser, a coach of a school or club, the COPs allow one to effectively evaluate the known risks of aquatic sporting activities and help mitigate them. The necessary safe practices in place will provide ease of mind and encourage more to participate in aquatic sports,” added Mr Tan.
Ms. Choy Sauw Kook, Director-General (Quality and Excellence), Enterprise Singapore, said, “The safety of our athletes and members of the public is of paramount importance. The launch of SS 700: 2023 and SS 701:2023 reiterate our continued commitment to work with key stakeholders and experts, allowing us to identify best practices and develop this series of water sports safety standards. We encourage all aquatics facilities as well as sport activity organisers and participants to adopt these standards and create a safe aquatics environment for all.”
Deployment of SS 700:2023 Code of Practice for Water Safety – Aquatic Facilities
The new SS 700:2023 outlines general guidelines for the prevention of drowning and injuries at aquatic facilities in Singapore. It provides requirements and recommendations for stakeholders to address any health and safety concerns during the use of aquatic facilities, thereby preventing injuries and drowning incidents. The SS 700:2023 will be available for purchase on the Singapore Standards e-Shop.
Deployment of SS 701:2023 Code of Practice for Inland and Open Water Sporting Activities
The new SS 701:2023 outlines water safety guidelines for recreational, competitive, and educational activities planned by public and organised groups in inland and open waters. It provides requirements and recommendations for stakeholders to address any health and safety concerns during the use of open water locations and during organised activities in an open water environment, thereby preventing injuries and fatalities. It is important for stakeholders and the public to work together to help strengthen health and safety practices for activities in open waters. The SS 701:2023 will be available for purchase on the Singapore Standards e-Shop.
The goal of the new Singapore Standards is to foster a safety-first culture
where stakeholders proactively and collectively play their part in improving
and ensuring water safety. Stakeholders can acquire greater understanding
of the risks associated with aquatic sporting activities at aquatic facilities
and in inland and open waters, thereby improving future risk planning and
risk management leading to safer water sport participation for everyone.
Organisations can use the new standards to build on their existing water
safety protocols or to establish new ones.
 SS 700:2023 Code of Practice for Water Safety – Aquatic Facilities is revised from TR71:2019 Code of practice for water safety – Aquatic facilities, the previous standard for aquatic facilities published in 2019. SS 701:2023 Code of Practice for Inland and Open Water Sporting Activities took reference from SS 681:2022 Code of practice for sport safety and SS 700:2023 Code of practice for Water Safety – Aquatic Facilities.