Withdrawn Certificates Update

Further to CertMark Internationals (CMI) notification of the withdrawal of 9 CodeMark Certificates last week, CMI wish to issue the following update.

  • Firstly; CMI wishes to advise that the withdrawal of the Certificates in no way implies that any of the products certified do not meet the requirements of the National Construction Code (NCC) as detailed on the certificates.
  • Secondly; all construction previously installed with a reliance on the Withdrawn certificates, prior to the date of withdrawal, is to be considered compliant with the requirements of the National Construction Code (NCC) as detailed on the certificates.

CMI is currently undertaking a review of the withdrawn certificates and expects the revised certificates to be lodged with JAS-ANZ for approval end of next week.

In several cases, the Certificate Holders have opted not to renew their certifications, as a result of having moved to replacement paneling systems.  In such cases, as detailed above, any construction previously installed with a reliance on the Withdrawn certificates, prior to the date of withdrawal, is to be considered compliant with the requirements of the National Construction Code (NCC) as detailed on the certificates.

Changes being introduced in NCC 2019

 

The following notification has been provided by the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) to assist in preparing the market for the introduction of the National Construction Code (NCC) 2019. Further information can be found at;

https://www.abcb.gov.au/Connect/Articles/2019/01/14/What-to-Expect-in-NCC-2019

Changes being introduced in NCC 2019 are almost here. As seen in the public comment draft released last year, there’s lots to take in! Read on to find out more about key changes, dates and what’s available to help you understand it.

What’s changed?

All Volumes

Performance

Quantifying many of the NCC Performance Requirements to provide more performance-based compliance options is a key feature of NCC 2019.  You’ll see more Performance Requirements quantified with the introduction of 20 new Verification Methods (VMs).

Readability

The ABCB’s readability project aims to improve the NCC requirements to be more readily understood. Introducing consistent NCC Governing Requirements is the first step of this major piece of work with all three Volumes of the NCC having the same requirements from 2019. Significant changes have also been made to the structure of NCC Volume Three, the Plumbing Code of Australia.

 

NCC Volumes One and Two

Safety

New VM for construction in bushfire-prone areas.

Health and amenity

New condensation management provisions.

Accessibility

New VMs for access to and from a building and for ramps.

Sustainability

New heating and cooling load limits for residential buildings using the NatHERS DTS compliance pathway.

NCC Volume One only

Safety

Fire sprinklers
New DTS Provisions for fire sprinkler systems, for apartment buildings and other residential buildings (i.e. Class 2 and 3 buildings) 4 storeys and above and up to 25 metres in effective height (generally those buildings 4 to 8 storeys).

Occupiable outdoor areas

New DTS Provisions clarifying requirements for occupiable outdoor areas, such as roof-top bars and cinemas.

Fire safety VM

A new, non-mandatory VM for fire safety introduced (NCC Schedule 7). This VM can be used for developing a Performance Solution for up to 24 Performance Requirements. Its adoption will be delayed until 1 May 2020 to allow time for training and support.

Sustainability

Energy efficiency
The commercial building energy efficiency requirements (i.e. Section J) are significantly changed, including new VMs for NABERS and Green Star. This change is subject to a 1 year transition period from 1 May 2019, during which time, either the NCC 2016 or NCC 2019 requirements may be used.

Accessibility

Accessible adult change facilities (AACF)

AACFs are sanitary facilities with additional features to assist people with more profound or complex disabilities who are unable to independently use standard accessible facilities. New requirements mean these facilities are required in certain new or redeveloped public buildings such as shopping centres, museums, theatres, sporting venues and airports.

NCC Volume Two only

New and improved acceptable construction practices (ACPs), including new ACPs for masonry and attachment of decks and balconies and improved ACPs for roof and wall cladding and fire safety.

NCC Volume Three only

New and consolidated requirements for heated water temperature control, cross-connection control and rainwater harvesting and use.

NCC 2019 Key Dates

Preview released NCC 2019 adopted Energy efficiency transition ends FSVM adopted
February 2019 1 May 2019 1 May 2020 1 May 2020

Call to make Australian Standards Free to Australian businesses.

See the following below articles from the Safety Institute of Australia regarding opening up Australian standards from the monopoly that SAI Global currently holds.

https://www.sia.org.au/news-and-publications/news/media-release-call-australian-standards-be-free-australian-businesses

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/australian-standards-unfair-exchange-david-clarke/

Holding Redlich – Combustible Cladding Assessments

Combustible cladding assessments for building industry professionals and fire engineers: golden goose or road to ruin?

In response to public concerns about the use of combustible building materials, the Queensland Government has introduced a new regime to assess the safety of existing cladding on buildings.

On 1 October 2018, changes to the Building Regulation 2006 (Regulation) commenced, affecting privately-owned class 2 to 9 buildings of type A or type B construction, (ie mainly, but not exclusively, commercial buildings over three story’s )[1] for which a building development approval was given after 1 January 1994 but before 1 October 2018 for building work to build the building or to alter the cladding on the building.

The new changes have ushered in a process for such building owners to assess whether buildings have potentially combustible cladding (i.e. made of a material not consistent with the Building Code of Australia (BCA)), or deemed combustible under AS 1530.1-1994.

This new regime may provide a golden business opportunity for some building industry professionals and RPEQ fire engineers with the ability to cater to this new market need. However, building industry professionals and fire engineers should carefully consider whether to undertake this type of work as there are risks involved.

………

Read the full story at https://www.holdingredlich.com/combustible-cladding-assessments

 

QFES Building Application Position Statement – Combustible Cladding

The Queensland Fire and Emergency Services have put out a position statement,

“To inform stakeholders involved in the development of Class 2 – 9 buildings of Type A or Type B construction in Queensland of the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services’ (QFES) expectations with respect to the fire safety performance of buildings affected by combustible cladding.

This position statement is intended to be a readily identifiable policy applied by QFES as a Referral Agency for the purposes of Section 22(2)(b) of the Planning Regulation 2017.”

For the full position statement please see https://www.qfes.qld.gov.au/buildingsafety/cladding/Pages/Cladding-Position-Statement.aspx

CMI is officially partnered with CCIC in China

CMI is officially partnered with CCIC in China. Our offices are located in the CCIC building in Shandong China Certification & Inspection Group (CCIC) is an independent third party certification and inspection organisation  dedicated to providing inspection, verification, certification and testing services, with accreditation by General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People’s Republic of China(AQSIQ), Certification and Accreditation Administration of the People’s Republic of China(CNCA) and China National Accreditation Service for Conformity Assessment(CNAS).

Developed over 30 years, CCIC has become a comprehensive one-stop service provider for international clients in the fields of quality, safety, health and environmental protection. CCIC enjoys great reputation worldwide and is the most influential and comprehensive multi-national inspection & certification organization in China.

CCIC now owns approximately 300 offices, 200 cooperative labs, over 16,000 employees. CCIC’s business network covers major ports, cities and trade centers in over 20 countries and regions

Bypass bridge steel found to fail tests in New Zealand

Breaking_News_LogoA article has been published by Radio NZ today that sixteen hundred tonnes of steel from China has been found to be too weak.
This steel was to be used for four bridges on the $450 million Huntly bypass that forms part of the $2 billion Waikato Expressway.

Contractors building the ‘Road of National Significance’ chose a very low bid for the steel tubes.

But the test certificates for them have turned out to be wrong, and now an expensive fix-up job is under way.

The contractors, Fulton Hogan and HEB Construction, have admitted to RNZ News the steel tubes were not good enough. They did not comply with standards for structural steel, which for bridges were very high as they must resist impacts, heavy loads and low temperatures.

It was only after a third lot of testing that the contractors found out. The first tests were done in China by the steel mill and the tube manufacturer; it is understood the second tests were done in New Zealand on samples sent here from China.

Both lots of tests said the steel met the New Zealand standard….

 

Read the full article on www.RadioNZ.co.nz

Statement of Clarification

Aluminium Composite Panels (ACPs)

The fallout from the Docklands fire and the ongoing debate (at the highest level of government) has resulted in changes to not only ACPs in the market place, but also, tangible and actionable new requirements under the NCC and State and Territory regulations.

CMI has been in consultation with a number of industry stakeholders regarding the use of composite panels. This includes the Victorian Building Authority (VBA), Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) and the Joint Accreditation Scheme-Australia New Zealand (JAS-ANZ). CMI have also been in discussions with several prominent building surveyors regarding future use of the CodeMark Certificate of Conformity as well as the evidence required in the use of the CodeMark Certificate of Conformity.

CMI’s discussions with the VBA have resulted in the requirement for a performance solution in support of the product. This is required either on a case by case basis for each building or part of the supporting evidence within the CodeMark Certification Certificate. This is due to the VBA’s position on the limited application of Deemed-to-Satisfy clauses for combustible products. For example, specification C1.1 Clause 2.4 requires the attachment not to cause an undue risk of fire spread. This is a performance detail within the DtS clauses which can only be demonstrated through evaluation to the Performance Requirements by an appropriately qualified engineer.

Discussions with the ABCB indicated that a product Evaluation Report by CMI is required with support from a professional fire engineer. In addition, the ABCB have advised that the CodeMark Certificate of Conformity will have a format change to be introduced in late June or early July. The purpose of this change is to greatly enhance the mandatory information contained on the Certificate of Conformity. The proposed format will provide a more useful document that facilitates the granting of consent on building projects.  By having an Evaluation Report supporting the certificate, the information will be transposed from the Evaluation Report to whatever format the certificate may take. During this time, it is considered important that a consistent Evaluation Report be generated.

 

So where to from here?

1 – Test evidence

ACPs will need appropriate testing on a small and large scale. This applies to all panels on an individual basis.

For internal use of the panel, the following testing is required:

  • ISO 9705

Any testing from 1 May 2016 will require documentation detailing a group number under AS 5637.1:2010 from testing to:

  • ISO 9705 or
  • AS/NZS 3837

For external use of the panel, the following testing is required:

  • Core testing to AS 1530.3
  • Assembly testing to AS 1530.3 (panel as a whole)
  • Full scale façade testing
    • NFPA 285
    • BS 8414 or ISO 13785.2 (independent of AS 5113)
    • AS 5113 (BS 8414 or ISO 13785.2)
  • Performance evaluation by a professional fire engineer registered on Engineers Australia NER demonstrating compliance of the product against the Performance Requirements CP2 and CP4.

From the above testing and performance solution additional information relating to the product such as installation manual as well as technical fixing detail for various configurations will be needed. This includes walls, around doors and windows, awnings and the like.

CMI will then complete an Evaluation Report of the product which will be publicly available and supplement the CodeMark Certificate of Conformity.

The CodeMark Certificate of Conformity will be updated in its current format following review of the testing, performance solution and installation details.

When the ABCB releases the final formatting of the enhanced CodeMark Certificate of Conformity, CMI will make the necessary changes as required in consultation with the Certificate Holder. The details will be extracted from the Evaluation Report, which will remain consistent.

Currently, many Certificates of Conformity are at different stages based on various changes. CMI requires that all Certificates of Conformity including new applicants meet the CMI Acceptance Criteria for ACPs with their supporting evidence.

CMI is committed to following directions set by the ABCB, JAS-ANZ and Building Consent Authorities to build confidence in the evidence and application of the CodeMark Certification Scheme.

2 – Next step

As a consequence of the requirements outlined above, the minimum requirement for CMI to approve a new certification or to maintain a current ACP certification will be:

  • A CMI Evaluation Report
  • A performance solution
  • Full scale testing
  • Core material testing
  • Assembly testing

Many CodeMark Certificate Holders will need additional testing or information (Supporting Evidence) to validate their certificates. CMI will work with all ACP applicants and current Certificate Holders to assist in achieving the conformity requirements. CMI will complete a technical analysis of each ACP certificate, and a gap analysis report will be provided to current Certificate Holders.


Update – August 2016

Please note that the small scale testing of AS/NZS 3837 and ISO 5660.1 are no longer accepted, and have been removed from the article.