Non-compliant cladding fuelled Melbourne apartment tower fire, MFB finds
Non-compliant cladding in spotlight across Australia
Having proper passive fire protection can be the difference between a fire-damaged apartment and a fire-damaged apartment block. Despite the far-reaching consequences when dealing with more storeys and higher occupancies, non-compliance in regards to fire-protection is still highly prevalent throughout multi-residential construction in Australia.
The past couple of years have seen notable incidents in Melbourne and Brisbane where fires have spread rapidly throughout apartment blocks due to the non-compliant application of building panel. Both incidents resulted in buildings being evacuated and millions of dollars in damages and both incidents could have been prevented.
The BCA contains Deemed to Satisfy provisions for the Fire Resistance Level (FRL) for the internal walls and shafts, external walls, floors and ceilings of multi-residential constructions, which dictate the required structural adequacy, integrity and insulation of a system. The FRL represents the passive fire protection provided by a system, with the higher the number the longer the fire can be contained and the systems maintains
Here we look at 5 products developed to provide passive fire protection in multi-res construction:
A fire-rated walling panel with a non-combustible, non-ozone depleting Mineral Wool core, enclosed in Australian-made BlueScope Colorbond steel, Bondor’s fire-rated products can meet varying FRL requirements.
Fire-rated plasterboard with a specially processed glass fibre-reinforced gypsum core for use in fire rated wall and ceiling systems. Available in 13mm and 16mm thickness in 1200mm wide panels of various standard lengths from 2400mm to 3600mm.
A complete construction system for low-rise apartment buildings, and a lightweight alternative to traditional concrete and masonry construction. Multiframe comprises a range of timber framed fire rated wall and ceiling systems that achieve required FRLs for BCA compliance.
Hebel PowerPanelXL is a 75mm thick, steel reinforced building panel made from Autoclaved Aerated Concrete supplied in lengths of 1200mm to 3000mm for standard widths of 600mm. Suitable for low-rise multi-res, PowerPanelXL is non-combustible with the ability to achieve FRL of 180/180/180.
Lightweight panels made from inorganic minerals reinforced with three layers of fibreglass mesh providing superior strength for external wall cladding. Astrix panels have been tested to achieve an FRL of 120/120/120.