What is combustible cladding?
Cladding is the outside skin of a building. It is used to provide insulation and weather resistance, and to improve the appearance of buildings.
While there are numerous types and brands of cladding available, there are certain types that may pose a risk for building occupants, as well as the community. This is because, in the event of a fire, these types of cladding may increase the rate at which the fire spreads. Two types of particular note include aluminium composite panels or 'ACP' (PDF, 620.39 KB) and expanded polystyrene or 'EPS' (PDF, 712.73 KB).
Learn more about how and why ACP and EPS pose a danger in our community.
Restricting the use of ACP and EPS cladding
Effective 1 February 2021, the Minister for Planning announced a prohibition on the use of certain aluminium composite panels and expanded polystyrene for any building work in connection with class 2 – 9 buildings of Type A and Type B construction (Read more information on the Classes and construction types).
For more information, refer to the Advisory Note on the Minister’s Guideline (PDF, 489.88 KB).
You can also learn about testing (PDF, 1150.71 KB) of expanded polystyrene cladding.
How can I find out if my building has combustible cladding?
Firstly, speak to your owners corporation or building manager. They will know if the building has been audited, and what the results were.
If your building has not been audited, you can ask them to request building documents, such as permits and drawings, from your local council or the relevant building surveyor. This may provide additional information about the building materials used in your apartment complex.
If your building is found to have at-risk cladding, it does not necessarily mean your building is unsafe.
The fire hazard of your cladding depends on various factors, for example, how it has been installed, where it has been applied, and the overall safety measures of the building.
If you suspect your building has combustible cladding, you should first seek advice from your owners corporation.