The construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas standard will soon be available to everyone.
Adrian O’Connell, Standards Australia’s Chief Executive Officer and Karen Andrews MP, Minister for Industry, Science and Technology announced a joint funding agreement for access to AS 3959:2018, Construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas, for all Australians.
“This is a difficult time for many individuals and communities. When the scale of the disaster became apparent, I wanted to make sure that Standards Australia was directly contributing to the broader Australian response,” said CEO of Standards Australia, Adrian O’Connell.
By funding access to this standard together with the Commonwealth Government, Standards Australia hopes that as communities rebuild after these most recent bushfires, they do so with access to Australia’s construction standard that deals with bushfire prone areas.
In 2019, Standards Australia put in place a new distribution and licensing framework to provide more options for delivering access to Australian Standards. Standards Australia and the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources will be jointly funding the access until 30 June 2021.
“When we announced our new distribution and licensing framework in November, being able to announce a partnership like this so quickly is a significant achievement for all involved. I would like to thank Minister Andrews and her Department for working with us to make this happen,” said Mr O’Connell
Standards Australia’s Distribution and Licensing Framework Policy launched in 2019 and has been paramount in the company’s ability to fund and open access to this standard and is an important example of how the new framework can support communities.
“It’s the nature of Standards Australia to support our nation and having control over our content has given us the opportunity to do this,” concluded Mr. O’Connell.
AS 3959:2018, Construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas provides guidance to professionals in the building and construction industry and is primarily concerned with improving the ability of buildings in designated bushfire-prone areas to better withstand bushfires.
Regarding the bushfires more broadly, Mr. O’Connell said it was too early to say what if any work needs to be done with technical standards following the bushfires.
“Everything that we’ve heard so far is telling us that houses built to the standard performed well. We’re currently looking for data about how AS 3959:2018 homes held up and working with relevant committees to support their ongoing work to help in this rebuilding phase.”
AS 3959:2018, Construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas, will soon be available as a PDF to all Australians until 30 June 2021.
Standards Australia is working with its distributors to make the access available.
This article was first published in The Fence magazine.