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Standards Australia and OBC partner to improve fire safety in NSW
share: Updated:2023-04-18 00:00:00

Standards Australia and the Office of the NSW Building Commissioner (OBC) are partnering in an effort to improve fire safety in the state’s residential apartment buildings.

An audit between September 2021 and September 2022 by NSW Fair Trading found 46% of NSW residential apartment buildings had serious defects in fire safety systems.

A subsequent report by the OBC identified a range of practical responses the NSW Government could apply to improve outcomes for industry and consumers, and a key recommendation was raising the capability of fire safety practitioners through practical training and certification.

In response to the findings of the report, Standards Australia and OBC have developed a new online training module on fire safety measures for fire doors, to be delivered by TAFE NSW’s Construct NSW Digital Learning Platform.

The course aims to increase industry awareness of the importance of maintaining this crucial fire safety system with fire safety practitioners, fire engineers, certifiers, architects, builders, strata managers, and anyone who is involved in the design, installation, maintenance, and verification of fire doors.

The course also intends to help professionals better understand and comply with fire protection standards.

Topics covered by the Fire Doors Course include:

• Identifying when and where fire doors are required

• Identifying standards relevant to fire doors

• Identifying the minimum standard of performance and operation for different fire doors

• Inspecting and assessing whether fire doors are operating as required

• Completing the relevant aspects of the approved fire safety statement form

The course is self-paced, can be completed online, and is recognised as continuing professional development (CPD) by the Fire Protection Accreditation Scheme (FPAS), now a mandatory accreditation for fire safety practitioners in NSW. It references relevant Australian Standards in the 1905 series for fire-resistant building components.

The NSW Building Commissioner, David Chandler OAM, says: “This is a significant educational resource for fire safety practitioners that will help create safer buildings and protect the irreplaceable.”

“Australian Standards provide a critical platform from which we can continue to upskill industry in NSW – a central part of the Construct NSW reform strategy.”

Daniel Chidgey, Standards Australia’s Head of Commercial Partnerships, says: “We are excited to partner with OBC and industry experts to create this digital course and help with the practical application of these important fire safety standards.”

“This course aims to lead to fewer defects and to improve safety for consumers – it is an excellent resource for the industry.”

“OBC had approached Standards Australia based on the success of our previous Value of Australian Standards Course, and we look forward to working with industry again in future to address critical gaps in standards-related training.”

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