Window Restriction Compliance
In 2009 specific requirements for windows were introduced to the Building Code of Australia (BCA). These requirements were introduced in response to a recent spate of children falling from windows. As a part of the Strata Schemes Management Amendment (Child Window Safety Devices) Regulation 2013 all NSW strata buildings must install window safety locks to prevent these tragedies from occurring.
What does this mean for you and your rental property?
As a landlord it is your responsibility to ensure that appropriate safety devices are installed in your property, not only for the safety of small children within the property, but also to avoid legal repercussions. The devices must be installed before March 2018. However if a fall was to occur before this date the owner of the property may be held accountable if proper window safety devices were not installed.
Our experienced technicians at Ausfire Compliance Services will visit your property and assess all of the windows within it. Where required we will install necessary window opening restrictors and issue a certificate of compliance for $40 per device
The following is an exert from the Australian Window Association website:
The Building Code of Australia (BCA) has always contained measures to prevent falls from heights. Until relatively recently, there were no specific requirements for windows, designers and certifiers would try to adapt the requirements for balustrades and apply them to windows. Finally, in 2009 specific requirements for windows were introduced. They were incorporated with, but distinct from the balustrade requirements. The wording has changed slightly over the years, but the essential details of the requirements have remained the same since BCA2009.
In response to a spate of children falling from windows the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) undertook to introduce new measures in the National Construction Code through BCA2013 to specifically prevent small children from falling from windows and balconies.
The new requirements, which will come into effect on 1 May 2013. Although a landlord has until March 2018 to comply with this legislation, the date is only a guide to avoid penalty by the NSW Government.
Important Note: If a window fall was to occur before the March 2018 compliance date, and no window safety measures were implemented, the owner’s corporation would be liable for failing to uphold their duty of care responsibilities, placing personal liability on all owners. This makes it vital for window restrictors to be installed by a professional wherever required, for both legal reasons and the safety of small children.