The rules and laws around fire safety measures in your workplace can sometimes be confusing… in fact, reading through the various acts and regulations can often put your head into a spin!
Breaking it all down into pieces that are applicable to your commercial premises, whether you’re a landlord or a business tenant, isn’t easy. So, we thought we’d give you some basics that will help you know what you need to do with regards to having smoke alarms installed in your factory, office, warehouse, industrial site, construction site or dangerous good premises.
There are a number of ‘essential safety measures’ that have been set out in the Victorian Building Act 1993 and the Building Regulations 2006. Smoke alarms are just one of the many measures covered in this list, which also include things such as exit doors, emergency lighting and standby power systems.
But, let’s focus on smoke alarms. If your building was constructed before 1 July 1994, it must comply with Regulations 1212-1217. The relevant bit of these regulations is that ‘Offices for professional or commercial purposes’ must have smoke alarm that are maintained as part of the essential safety measures of the building.
If your building was built after 1 July 1994, Regulations 1201-1211 state that the owner of the building has to comply with essential safety measures that contained within the building’s certificate of occupancy (CoO). If the CoO says the building has to have smoke alarms, escape stairwells and a monitored fire alarm system, then the building should comply. In addition, a copy of the CoO should be framed or laminated and hung in a position in the building where everyone can access it should they wish to.
Naturally, there are other factors to consider depending on what type of business premises you have, so if you have specific questions about smoke alarms at your workplace, give the In2 Fire team a call to discuss it further.
For the complete package of information about essential safety measures, click here to access the Victorian Building Authority website.