Fire & Safety in Australia: What Commercial Builders Should Consider Regarding Fire Protection

Fire & Safety in Australia: What Commercial Builders Should Consider Regarding Fire Protection

When constructing a building, commercial builders must consider not only public health and safety but also building fire safety. They must look at the property from all angles, From thinking about the fire safety on a construction site, materials used in their design to set up suitable flow and layout for rescue, commercial builders do a lot more than adding walls, ceiling, along with a roof to a building.

The commercial builders function in fire safety is vital. They should always consider safety, and it’s their professional obligation to develop a building which complies with all building codes. Commercial structures are required to comply with all building codes.

Fire poses risk in terms of safety to building occupants, building integrity, business interruption and the economic health of a community. Designing and building structures in compliance with building and fire code requirements with appropriate fire-fighting equipment, contributes to the reduction of fire losses.

3 Critical Building Issues Related to Fire Safety Commercial Builders Should Consider

 

1. Materials Used in Construction

 

construction site in australia
Image Credit: Pathway to Aus

The materials used in a building’s construction will significantly influence the fire safety of the property, but also the ease of access for first responders.

Avoid combustible materials. Commercial and residential building is best if it does not contain excessive amounts of combustible or high smoke producing materials. While these materials cannot be totally avoided, the commercial builders’ job, in conjunction with fire safety crews, is to determine which combinations are highly combustible or create toxic smoke combinations, so that they can reduce issues in the event of a fire.

2. The Layout and Flow of the Property

The layout and flow of a property can dictate how quickly fire crews can not only combat fires but rescue those that might be trapped within. This is achieved by working closely with fire experts and first responder teams.

Have fire experts review possible designs and provide feedback as to whether that design is friendly for rescue. Incorporate any suggestions from fire crews to improve safety or flow.

3. Fire Escape Routes  

 

construction fire
Image Credit: lhsfna.org

Building codes require emergency exit routes that are not only expertly planned, but easy to navigate in the event of a fire. Commercial builders must know all applicable fire codes but also work in close collaboration with fire safety engineers to establish fire safety systems, practical fire escape routes for commercial, residential, and multi-purpose buildings.

Buildings under construction have a greater potential for significant property damage from fire,  particularly prior to fire suppression systems are installed and operational. Thus, a new building constructed in Australia, must be built in accordance with the NCC as it provides extremely high levels of safety.