Fire Compliance Obligations

Fire Compliance Obligations – QLD


Queensland Legislation

Building Fire Safety Regulations 2008, Building Act 1975, and Building Code of Australia.

This legislation exists to prevent loss of life, injury to persons, and loss of property in situations of fire emergencies. Its two main goals are ensuring:

  1. Safe evacuation is possible during a fire emergency
  2. Fire safety installations are maintained

Your Body Corporate is responsible for the safety of any person in your building in the event of a fire. This is an onerous responsibility. Ensuring your Body Corporate is compliant with the Fire Safety Regulations can be a difficult process. The best thing you can do is engage the services of a licensed and reputable company to ensure adherence to the legislation. These companies, such as Star BMS, can undertake Fire Compliance Audits to identify areas of non-compliance and recommend steps to rectify any issues.

It is important to note that all buildings must be compliant at all times. The QFRS may impose fines at any time for non-compliance.

An Explanation of the Key Elements in Fire Safety Compliance

A class 1a building is a detached house, or one or more attached dwellings, each being a building, separated by a fire-resisting wall.

Fire Safety Advisors are required for any residential buildings over 25 meters tall, or any building with 30 or more workers. They must complete an accredited training course from the QFRS and must re-certify every three years. A FSA is required by law to provide or arrange first response evacuation instruction and evacuation coordination instructions. Additionally, a Fire Safety Advisor may assist the body corporate in:

  • Developing the Fire & Evacuation Plan, and Evacuation Sign & Diagram
  • Reviewing the Fire & Evacuation Plan, and Evacuation Sign & Diagram
  • Liaising with the QFRS during building inspections
  • Advising of breaches of the regulations

The committee and the Fire Safety Advisor  should communicate often, exchanging information which may impact the evacuation plans and training schedules.

An Occupiers statement is a summary of testing and maintenance performed on the fire installations at your building.

All the buildings that are not classified 1a  buildings are required to engage one or more licensed providers to maintain their fire equipment. The fire service provider will present your Body Corporate with an Annual System Condition Report containing details of all testing and maintenance work completed on a particular item of equipment that year. As you will then have a number of reports, you must collate the details into an Occupiers Statement. A prudent Body Corporate will allocate the responsibility of preparing the statement to an individual so that it is not overlooked. The Occupiers Statement must be completed and signed by a representative of the Body Corporate (an occupier or a committee member) and a copy sent annually to the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service. Additional copies must be kept on site and off site.

In this way, the Body Corporate is attesting to the fact that their fire safety equipment has been tested and maintained by a competent provider.

Fire and Evacuation Plans must be produced by someone licensed with the Queensland Building and Construction Commission. They must be kept on site. Wardens and any other members of the evacuation team must be familiar with the Fire and Evacuation Plans. Prudent committee members will have read and understood the plans.  A copy may be kept in common areas for easy access.

A Fire Safety Installation Checklist listing all fire safety equipment for your building (emergency lifts, fire curtains, fire doors etc.) should be kept to facilitate the completion of the Occupiers Statement. This checklist should be provide at the certification stage of a new building, or, if this hasn’t occurred, a fire maintenance company can advise the Body Corporate on what equipment has been installed.

Fire and Evacuation signs must be reviewed every five years, or after any major change to the building. They must be displayed in a prominent manner in all common areas; and must also be displayed in each short-term letting unit.

Evacuation Coordinators are  required in all buildings. They must complete Fire and Evacuation Training Quarterly.

Evacuation Practices must be carried out annually in any building not classified as a Class 1a building. This includes residential buildings with no workers.

Worker Training: All workers in a building require two kinds of evacuation training:
– General Evacuation Training: Learning the procedure for evacuating the building safety according to the Fire and Evacuation Plan.
– First Response Training: Correct Procedure for use of fire extinguishers, hose reels and fire blankets.
If the building has a Fire Safety Advisor, the must conduct the training for the workers.

Critical Defects: If your fire equipment maintenance provider has issued you with a critical defect notice, you must rectify it within one month. Proof of rectification must be attached to the annual Occupiers Statement.

Fire records must be kept on site and available for QFRS inspection. Records include:

  • Fire and evacuation plan
  • Training records
  • Evacuation practice record
  • Records of maintenance
  • Occupier statement
  • Certificate of classification

A copy of records must be also kept off site.

Our qualified staff can inspect your premises and consult with you to provide a wide range of advice that is essential to ensure that your Bodies Corporate is fire safety compliant.

Click here to contact Star BMS today.







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