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Update to the go-to combined wind actions standard
share: Updated:2021-09-06 00:00:00

Standards Australia has recently published the go-to standard for assessing wind impacts on structures.

The revision provides guidance to designers for the consideration of effects of wind events on materials used and structural design.

Key stakeholders were in support of the revision as industry saw the need for the standard to incorporate new knowledge of the Australian and New Zealand climates.

The standard has introduced a ‘climate change multiplier’ to allow for future adjustments to the design of winds speeds, particularly for regions affected by tropical cyclones.

Also known as the Wind Actions standard, AS/NZS 1170.2, Structural design actions – Part 2: Wind actions, plays a key role in assisting in the safety of structures within the community and limiting property damage from severe wind events in Australia and New Zealand. It is referenced by the National Construction Code of Australia and the Building Code of New Zealand.

Of significant importance, the standard reflects the current research and understanding of wind events and the ongoing effects of climate change, as extreme weather and climate events have serious impacts on our economy, society and environment.

“A priority of Standards Australia is to continue to develop standards that are reflective of current research. The Wind Actions standard is one of the most heavily used standards by industry and is now up-to-date with wind events considered to have altered due to climate change,” said Roland Terry-Lloyd, Head of Standards Development at Standards Australia.

The standard now incorporates greater design methods by acknowledging and accounting for differing wind events in Australia and New Zealand. The revision includes changes to regional boundaries and wind direction multipliers for Australia, along with wind speeds and ‘lee effect’ zones for New Zealand.

Not only have there been changes in relation to understanding of wind actions, both static and dynamic, over the past decade, there have been new anemometer stations installed generating updated wind measurements, which can greatly assist designers. The standard also takes into consideration new types of wind-sensitive structures such as solar farms and mobile phone towers being built in Australia and New Zealand.

“The new standard is a credit to the many voluntary members of committees BD006 and BD006-02, and the three project managers of Standards Australia, who worked on the standard for over three and a half years,” concluded the Chairs of the committees responsible for the standard.  

The recently published standard is:

AS/NZS 1170.2:2021, Structural design actions - Part 2: Wind actions.

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