Fire Safety

In the event of fire in a building, occupant safety and the protection of adjoining property are fundamental requirements of building regulations. The following projects are being undertaken to ensure the robustness of the fire safety provisions.

High-rise residential buildings

Assessing the performance of combustible external wall assemblies

Standards Australia, has developed a new Australian Standard (AS 5113), which will provide a more accurate indication of the fire performance of wall claddings and wall assemblies. AS 5113 will be referenced in a new Verification Method that will enable industry to verify the fire performance of external cladding systems against the relevant Performance Requirements of the NCC.

A National Advisory Note has been developed by the ABCB to assist practitioners on the appropriate selection and use of external wall claddings on buildings.

Residential Care Facilities

NCC DTS Solutions require a fire sprinkler system in Class 3 buildings used for residential aged care, Class 9a health care buildings used for residential aged care and Class 9c aged care buildings.

This project will assess the efficacy of various options for fire safety systems in residential buildings other than aged care buildings, that may accommodate occupants with a disability, or young children, requiring assistance to evacuate in an emergency.

Smoke Alarm Technology

Performance Requirements in Volumes One and Two of the NCC require the provision of automatic warning of the detection of smoke in buildings providing sleeping accommodation. Deemed-to-Satisfy (DTS) Provisions subsequently reference compliance with Australian Standards that enable the installation of ionisation and photoelectric smoke alarms. Over the past ten years, claims have been made that ionisation alarms are inadequate for the purpose of providing sufficient early warning. In the interests of maintaining building occupant safety; the ABCB is collaborating with Fire and Rescue NSW to evaluate the efficacy of the differing smoke alarm technologies.

Smoke Hazard Management

DTS Provisions for smoke hazard management are contained in Volume One Part E2 and include tabulated general provisions and technical specifications. This project will review the structure and content of these requirements in order to improve their clarity and useability.

Holistic Review of Fire Safety

The holistic review of fire safety project will initially investigate opportunities to improve the NCC’s DTS fire safety requirements for Class 2 and 3 buildings. The project will include a fire risk analysis of residential Class 2 and 3 buildings, an international comparison of fire-related life safety risks in buildings, and consideration of commonly used Performance Solutions for possible inclusion in the NCC.

Bushfire Provisions for Non-residential Buildings

The objective of this project is to investigate the scope of Class 5 to 9 buildings that should be included in an expansion of the existing NCC requirements for the protection of buildings in bushfire prone areas. The project will focus on buildings used by vulnerable people, such as hospitals, schools and aged care facilities.

Understanding the NCC's Fire Provisions

Comprehensive NCC fire awareness training modules have been released for Volume One and Volume Two.


Fire performance of external walls and cladding

Relates to the fire performance of external walls and cladding in NCC Volume One.

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NCC Volume One, Fire Safety Resource Kit

Performance based design solutions for fire safety in Class 2 to 9 buildings (multi-residential, commercial and public buildings). Read More

NCC Volume Two, Fire Safety Resource Kit

Performance based design solutions for fire safety in Class 1 and 10 buildings (residential buildings). Read More