Building Homes in Australia

buildahouseIf you intend to build a house in a high bushfire risk area, there are some regulations you will need to follow in order to fulfil the requirements for residential permits. The requirements that proposals need to adhere to are set out by the Government of South Australia. Details of these requirements can be found in the Building Code Australia state variations. Plans are assessed according to the bushfire protection planning provisions of the relevant local area development plan. The County fire service also needs to be referred to in relation to how difficult protecting the structure from bushfire will be.

The following areas will be assessed to ensure compliance within the criteria for all new residential permits:
  • must possess a water supply of a minimum of twenty-two thousand litres dedicated for fire-fighting.
  • any gaps between the building and the ground must be closed in order to prevent burning debris from being able to enter.
  • must be located at least twenty metres from vegetation that is flammable or combustible.
  • there must be roads leading to the building that are suitable for fire fighting vehicles.
  • the building must be both designed and located with fire risk minimization in mind.
Additionally, residential permits for new buildings must undergo a site visit where assessment will be made to ensure designs are constructed to appropriate levels of protection. This assessment must be submitted as part of the application for residential permit ie building rules consent.
For medium risk areas, residential permits are assessed against the bushfire protection planning provisions of the relevant local area development plan. Details of the specific requirements can be found in the Building Code Australia state variations. The following areas will be assessed to ensure compliance within the criteria for all new residential permits:
  • must possess a water supply of a minimum of two thousand litres dedicated for fire-fighting.
  • any gaps between the building and the ground must be closed in order to prevent burning debris from being able to enter.
  • must be located at least twenty metres from vegetation that is flammable or combustible.
  • there must be roads leading to the building that are suitable for fire fighting vehicles.
  • the building must be both designed and located with fire risk minimization in mind.
Additionally, residential permits for new buildings must either build to  a set of specified requirements or undergo a site visit where assessment will be made to determine bushfire attack levels and appropriate levels of protection. Other planning requirements can be found within the local area development plan. In general, medium risk protection levels require design for resistance to sparks and embers.
Exclusions to these residential permit requirements exist within existing townships where an adequate water supply is held for fire-fighting and suitable emergency vehicles access exists.
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