The Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Fire Safety and Building Certification) Regulation 2017 came into force on October 1, 2017, to amend the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000.
The reforms were in response to an independent review of the Building Professionals Act 2005 , released in October 2015 that found a ‘number of significant problems with the current building regulation and certification system’. The Department of Planning and Environment has stated the amendments are designed to improve fire safety in buildings and increase confidence in fire safety systems.
A transition period was implemented to allow time for building owners to understand the regulatory changes, and for an increased number of building surveyors to be accredited to accommodate the increased demand for their services.
The transition period was originally to conclude in October 2019 – this was extended further as additional changes were made to the requirements. The Department have recently announced the effective date of the most recent amendments will now be July 1, 2020 and confirmed there will be no further extensions to the reforms.
Why the regulatory changes
The goal of the amendments is to increase building safety through introducing a level of transparency not previously enjoyed by most building owners, whereby a maintenance contractor’s work should be independently assessed by an Accredited Safety Practitioner to ensure compliance. This will, improve safety to occupants, provide peace of mind to facility managers, reduce risk of litigation, and enhance risk management to building owners, and assist in reducing costs.
Independent assessment of facilities’ fire safety measures by an accredited third-party Safety Practitioners, provides leverage for building owners to put forward a strong argument to their insurers for premium reduction.
Form1’s view is that to continue self-assessment, which has been the cause of most of the problems within the building industry and associated trades, is self-serving. Self-assessment will not improve safety to occupants, will not provide transparency and peace of mind to building owners, will not provide additional legal protection to facility managers, and will not enhance risk management.
With the implementation of new legislations, Form1 are fully equipped to handle new regulatory changes in-house with Accredited Safety Practitioners’ on the Form1 team to provide all the services for essential fire safety measures.
Form1 maintain our Essential Services Folders on site for the benefit of our clients.
Please contact your local Form1 office if you have any further questions on 9966 4200.
Click here to learn more about our fire safety services.