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Construct NSW releases Fire Safety Report

Posted on : Friday, 17 December 2021

Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation, the Hon. Kevin Anderson MP, has released Construct NSW's Industry Report on reforms to improve fire safety in new and existing buildings


The report was the result of a working group, chaired by former Treasury Secretary Michael Lambert, which undertook a detailed review of the regulatory framework, industry practice, and the role of regulatory authorities to see where improvements were needed. 


It will lead to further changes to improve the design, installation, certification, and maintenance of critical fire safety systems, recommending that the Government: 


  • establish a new template building manual that provides the owners. corporation and fire practitioners with key information on what is installed, how it should perform and essential maintenance requirements;
  • tighten the regulation of fire safety work, starting with establishing a new category of certifier to verify the performance of installed systems;
  • mandate improved quality and standards for fire safety documentation which is relied on for certification and inspection processes; and
  • enhance the way that the main regulatory authorities work together, with strategies to deliver more consistent and effective approaches to compliance across NSW.


The Department of Customer Service has now established an implementation taskforce to identify how each of the recommendations will be delivered. 


Fire Protection Association Australia Acting CEO Leigh Gesthuizen welcomed the NSW Government's ongoing commitment to fire safety.


"This work is a significant step forward towards lifting industry standards and delivering a safer community," Mr Gesthuizen said.


The report forms part of the NSW Government's Construct NSW transformation strategy to establish a more trustworthy residential building and construction industry by 2023.


FPA Australia recently held a webinar to discuss the likely changes that will come from the recommendations, involving Matt Press from the Office of the Building Commissioner, former President Bill Lea, and Board Director Rob Broadhead. 


This will be available online to watch soon.