ISO 22341:2021 - Security and Resilience - the Long-Awaited CPTED Standard

By Zachariah Reisch and Dr Maher Magrabi

09 Apr 2021

 

The International Organisation for Standardization (ISO) has recently released a new Standard for Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED). We at Lote have gone through the Standard to provide an informal summary of key ideas within, as well as our thoughts on its overall effectiveness as a representative Standard for CPTED more generally.

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Tags: Fire Engineering, Office Evacuation, Probabilistic Assessment, Risk, Evacuation Analysis

 


 

Abstract: Probabilistic Risk Assessment of Occupant Evacuation for Office Buildings

By Srinath Iyengar

09 Apr 2021

 

This abstract identifies some of the benefits and shortcomings of conducting a probabilistic assessment of office spaces that are BCA compliant. This research will examine the value of combining probabilistic assessments with an evacuation analysis to more accurately determine the 'real-world' risk to life in the event of a fire, beyond simple 'yes or no' compliance.

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Tags: Fire Engineering, Office Evacuation, Probabilistic Assessment, Risk, Evacuation Analysis

 


 

Abstract: The Use of Cavity Barriers to Mitigate External Fire Spread in Multi-Storey Buildings

By Yahya Elhallak

09 Apr 2021

 

This abstract outlines a study on the effectiveness of cavity barriers, which function as a fire blocker in the external walls of multi-story buildings. The main goal of this research is to determine if the installation of cavity barriers is effective in stopping vertical fire spread on buildings that incorporate combustible building elements along the facade.

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Tags: Fire Engineering, Cavity Barriers, Multi-Storey Building, Fire Blocker, Aluminium Composite Panels, Ventilated Facade

 


 

Victorian Prohibition of High Risk Cladding Products - Minister's declaration

 

13 Mar 2021

 

With effect from 1 February 2021, the Minister for Planning has declared under section 192B(1) of the Building Act 1993 (the Act), that certain high risk external wall cladding products are prohibited from use by any person in the course of carrying out any building work in Victoria in connection with a Type A or Type B construction building.

The prohibition applies to Class 2 to 9 buildings required to be of Type A or Type B construction by the Deemed-to-Satisfy (DtS) Provisions of Part C1 of the Building Code of Australia Volume One (BCA), where an application for a building permit has been made to the relevant building surveyor on and after 1 February 2021.

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Tags: Cladding, Product Ban, Cladding Fire Safety, Cladding Fire Specialist, Cladding Fire Engineer, Cladding Fire Risk Assessment, Cladding Rectification Levy (CRL)

 


 

Everything you need to know about the Microsoft Exchange Server hack

 

12 Mar 2021

 

Four zero-day vulnerabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server are being actively exploited by a state-sponsored threat group from China and appear to have been adopted by other cyber attackers in widespread attacks.

While in no way believed to be connected to the SolarWinds supply chain attack that has impacted an estimated 18,000 organizations worldwide - so far - there is concern that lags in patching vulnerable servers could have a similar impact, or worse, on businesses.

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New NSW Standard Fire Safety Statement Template now in place

 

10 Mar 2021

 

Effective 1 March, 2021, fire safety assessors must use the new version of NSW Government's Fire Safety Statement template.

The FSS template was updated to reflect regulatory changes following the commencement of the Building and Development Certifiers Act 2018 (the Act) which changed some regulatory arrangements and terms - for example, replacing 'Competent Fire Safety Practitioner' with 'Accredited Practitioner (Fire Safety)'

In making the changes, the Government acknowledged its approval of FPA Australia as an accreditation authority under s.59 of the Act, and its acceptance of the Fire Protection Accreditation Scheme (FPAS) as mandatory for most fire systems designers and for fire safety assessors.

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Tags: Fire Safety Schedule NSW, Fire Safety Statement

 


 

Camera tricks: Privacy concerns raised after massive surveillance cam breach

 

10 Mar 2021

 

A hacking collective compromised roughly 150,000 internet-connected surveillance cameras from Verkada, Inc., granting them access to live and archived video feeds across multiple organizations, including manufacturing facilities, hospitals, schools, police departments and prisons.

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The Accellion Breach Keeps Getting Worse - and More Expensive

 

08 Mar 2021

 

The drumbeat of data breach disclosures is unrelenting, with new organizations chiming in all the time. But a series of breaches in December and January that have come to light in recent weeks has quietly provided an object lesson in how bad things can get when hackers find an inroad to dozens of potential targets - and they're out for profit.

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Regulation of PFAS firefighting foams

 

01 Mar 2021

 

The Protection of the Environment Operations (General) Amendment (PFAS Firefighting Foam) Regulation 2021 bans and restricts the use of PFAS firefighting foam in NSW to reduce their impacts on the environment, while still allowing its use for preventing or fighting catastrophic fires by relevant authorities and exempt entities

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Tags: PFAS, Firefighting Foam, Fire Engineer Hunter Valley, Dangerous Goods, Fire Risk Engineer Hunter Valley

 


 

Fire Safety Certification

 

23 Feb 2021

 

In 2017, the NSW Government introduced reforms through the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 (the Regulation) to strengthen fire safety certification for new and existing buildings.

These reforms improve the rigour and checking in the design, approval, construction and maintenance phases of the building life cycle.

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NSW Police to establish 24x7 SOC in cyber security overhaul

 

09 Feb 2021

 

NSW Police is building an around-the-clock cyber security operations centre (SOC) to protect its critical IT systems and data holdings from attack as part of a new multi-year program of work.

The SOC, which is expected to come online from May, will be central to the force evolving its active defence capabilities - a key objective of the cyber security transformation program.

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'The irony's not lost on me': Solar panel safety device led to 500 per cent rise in rooftop fires

 

02 Feb 2021

 

A solar panel safety device designed to protect firefighters from electric shock is behind an alarming increase in rooftop blazes, with incidents jumping more than 500 per cent in the past three years while the rate of safety inspections has decreased. Fire and Rescue NSW data shows firefighters attended 139 solar panel fires last year, compared to 22 in 2018 and 56 in 2019. There have already been 18 fires to January 26 this year.

The national watchdog and firefighters are attributing the majority of incidents to direct current (DC) isolator switches - designed to isolate the solar panels from the rest of the house - with the federal Clean Energy Regulator proposing to make the mandatory devices voluntary later this year.

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Tags: Solar Panel Safety, Rooftop Fires, Increase in rate of safety inspections

 


 

Construction Certificate (CC) applications that must be referred to Fire + Rescue NSW (FRNSW)

 

01 Jan 2021

 

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Construction Certificate Applications) Regulation 2020 (the Regulation) has just been made. This new Regulation amends the existing Clause 144 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 (EP&A Regulation), to expand the scope of construction certificate applications that require referral to Fire + Rescue NSW (FRNSW).

This new Regulation was published on Friday 11 December 2020 on www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/epub. It is now mandatory for Construction Certificate applications to be referred to Fire + Rescue NSW, where an application involves a Performance Solution (as defined in the Building Code of Australia (BCA) relating to:

  • Performance Requirement EP1.4 of Volume One of the BCA where it relates to an automatic fire suppression system for a class 2 or 3 building of 4 or more storeys (new clause 144(1)(f)); and

  • A class 9b early childhood centre (as defined within the BCA) located on a storey other than which provides direct egress to a road or open space, except for a 2 storey building where the early childhood centre is the only use in that building (new clause 144(1)(g)).

Construction certificate applications lodged before publication of the above new Regulation are not subject to the new requirements (new clause 144(8C)). Any enquiries about the above new requirements can be sent to BCAAdvisoryLineGroup@nswgov.onmicrosoft.com

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Tags: Clause 144 referral, Fire + Rescue NSW, Performance Solution, Construction Certificate NSW, Construction Certificate Hunter Valley

 


 

Fire and Smoke Separation in Aged Care
By: Yahya Elhallak

 

01 Feb 2021

 

The National Construction Code (NCC) Building Code of Australia (BCA) puts significant emphasis on the fire and smoke separation in a Class 9c Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF). This article explores the Fire & Life Safety regulation surrounding aged Care developments.

 

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Tags: Residential Aged Care Facility (RACF), Class 9c, Fire Safety, Fire Compartmentation, Smoke Compartmentation, Passive Fire Construction, Fire Resistance Level (FRL), Fire Stopping, Smoke Sealing

 


 

Fire Safety and Waste Management Facilities - Common Issues Encountered in the Industry
By: Srinath Iyengar

 

01 Feb 2021

 

The Federal Government introduced the Recycling and Waste Reduction Act 2020 in early December 2020, banning the export of unprocessed waste overseas. This legislation is expected to provide a stimulus to reconfigure local infrastructure to reprocess and re-manufacture recyclables onshore in Australia. This article sheds light on fire safety considerations for the growing number of waste management facilities being established around Australia.

 

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Tags: Waste Management, Waste Treatment, Fire Safety, Fire Risk Assessment, FRNSW Waste Facility Guideline, Fire Performance Design, Large-Isolated Building, Fire Detection Efficacy, Waste Stockpile Fire Hazard, Waste Smoke Management

 


 

Security Perspectives in Renewables and Waste Management
By: Dr Maher Magrabi

 

01 Feb 2021

 

Sustainability and Environmental Protection underlie massive shifts in the energy industry and waste management. This article explores these sectors and sheds light on security considerations that need to be taken into account during development projects. It also provides a summary of security and risk considerations for planners and project managers involved in renewable energy and waste management projects.

 

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Tags: Renewables, Waste Management, Security, Risk Management, Risk Assessment, Cyber Security

 


 

Performance solution reports or endorsement of proposed BCA non-compliances relating to fire safety systems

 

03 Jan 2021

 

Who can prepare performance solution reports or endorse proposed BCA non-compliances related to operational performance of relevant fire safety systems?

A person who is the subject of a competency certificate issued by a certifier may:

  1. prepare a performance solution report for a fire safety requirement (cl.130 or 144A of the EP&A Regulation), provided the person is a registered certifier-fire safety (previously C10), if required under cl.130(5) or 144A(3) of the EP&A Regulation.

  2. endorse a non-compliance with a specified provision of the BCA, relating to operational performance of a relevant fire safety system, involving minor modification or extension of that system (cl.164B of the EP&A Regulation).

 

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Tags: Regulated work NSW, Accredited practitioner fire safety NSW, performance solution report NSW, registered certifier-fire safety NSW (previously C10 Fire Engineer), competent fire safety practitioner NSW, relevant fire safety system, accredited practitioner (fire safety), C10 Certifier, Alternative Solution Report, Fire Engineer Hunter Valley

 

 


 

What is Regulated Work in NSW under the BDCA and BDCR

 

02 Jan 2021

 

Clause 64 of the Building and Development Certifiers Regulation 2020 (BDCR) states that - Certain registered certifiers may carry out certain regulated work.

(1) For the purposes of Building and Development Certifiers Act 2018 (BDCA) Section 55

  1. a registered certifier who holds an engineer electrical (previously C8 Certifier) class of registration may carry out regulated work comprising the endorsing of plans and specifications for relevant fire safety systems comprising a fire detection and alarm system, and

  2. a registered certifier who holds an engineer mechanical (previously C9 Certifier) class of registration may carry out regulated work comprising the endorsing of plans and specifications for relevant fire safety systems comprising a mechanically ducted smoke control system, and

  3. a registered certifier who holds a certifier hydraulic (building) [previously C14 Certifier] class of registration may carry out regulated work comprising the endorsing of plans and specifications for relevant fire safety systems comprising a hydraulic fire safety system.

Note: BDCA Section 55 of the Act provides that when this regulated work is carried out by a registered certifier it is certification work. The registered certifier must comply with all the requirements of the registered certifier's registration when carrying out this regulated work.

(2) In this clause - relevant fire safety system has the same meaning as in clause 136AA of the Planning Regulation.

 

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Tags: Regulated work NSW, Accredited practitioner fire safety NSW, performance solution report NSW, registered certifier-fire safety NSW (previously C10 certifier), competent fire safety practitioner NSW, relevant fire safety system, accredited practitioner (fire safety), C8 Certifier, C9 Certifier, C14 Certifier, C10 Certifier, Fire Engineer Central Coast

 

 


 

Fire Engineers can do 'Regulated Work'

 

01 Jan 2021

 

Clause 52 of Building and Development Certifiers Act 2018 (BDCA) defines the meaning of "regulated work" as:

  1. the carrying out of work as an accredited practitioner under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

  2. any other work declared by this or any other Act to be regulated work.

Recent clarification from the NSW Department of Fair Trading has confirmed that Fire Engineers can do 'regulated work' under Clause 64 of the Building and Development Certifiers Regulation 2020 (BDCR). Clause 64 authorises registered fire engineers to prepare a Performance Solution Report (previously Alternative Solution Report) under cl.130 or 144A of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation as 'regulated work'.

 

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Tags: Regulated work NSW, Accredited practitioner fire safety NSW, Performance Solution Report NSW, Alternative Solution Report NSW, registered certifier-fire safety NSW (previously C10 Fire Engineer), competent fire safety practitioner NSW