Maintenance of Essential Safety Measures

Fire Protection Systems and Equipment are nominated safety equipment, fittings, systems or management measures provided in, or for, a building and required in the event of fire or other emergency to protect against loss of life or property (for example, fire sprinklers, smoke control systems, and exits).
Russ Porteous
CEO, Firewize
01 Aug, 2018

Each state's legislative and regulatory framework refers to Fire Protection Systems and Equipment by a different name. The table below lists the names found in each State and Territory for Fire Protection Systems and Equipment. Some specific provisions have been included in Part I1 of the BCA since May 2004 and are now called '''safety measures''', however no specific technical maintenance standards are nominated in the BCA.

State or Territory Defined term for Fire Protection Systems and Equipment
Australian Capital Territory Active Fire Safety Systems
New South Wales Essential Fire Safety Measures
Northern Territory Safety Measures
Queensland Fire Safety Installations
South Australia Essential Safety Provisions
Tasmania Essential Safety and Health Features / Measures
Victoria Essential Safety Measures
Western Australia (No defined term)

Fire Protection Systems and Equipment are required to be ready to operate at all times, or a substantial threat to occupants and property may exist. However they may only be required to operate infrequently over the life of a building and therefore their reliability in a building is critical.

Regular ''maintenance'', also known as "routine servicing" of fire protection systems and equipment for continuing operational efficiency is an important part of every building owner's responsibility. For example, the Guide to the BCA states that the performance requirements of Part I1 of the BCA are to ensure that all building measures related to people safety continue to perform as originally intended.

The statutory requirements to maintain, upgrade and certify the suitability of existing buildings may also be included in relevant State or Territory legislation. For example, the provisions for ''maintenance of safety measures'' vary significantly dependent on which State or Territory the building is located in, and range from highly building specific technical and administrative procedures (such as in Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales) to no specific regulatory provisions (such as in Western Australia).

Australian Standards for Maintenance of Fire Protection Systems and Equipment

AS1851 is the  Australian Standard for maintenance of fire protection systems and equipment in buildings and a comprehensive revision of this standard has been released as AS1851-2012.

Australian standards are published by Standards Australia after significant industry and community consultation and consensus, and this revision represents the latest ''state-of-the-art'' information and technical standards available to the building industry and the public generally.

How Firewize can help 

Firewize provides regular inspection and testing of fire safety systems and equipment in accordance with Australian Standard AS1851. We provide reliable and accurate inspection and testing of your fire safety assets in accordance with the fire protection industry's ''Code of Conduct''. We are also able to provide reports at various levels of complexity depending on the compliance requirements.

For more information on how the new Australian Standard AS1851:2012 may affect you and your building contact Firewize on 1300 30 88 22.