VBA proactive inspection triggers critical safety rectification to a Bairnsdale retirement village

A proactive inspection by the Victorian Building Authority has triggered critical safety rectification to a number of individual units set to become a retirement village.

In February, inspectors from the VBA visited a 122-unit retirement village in Bairnsdale while it was still under construction.

A VBA officer inspected eight of the apartments at the village and identified that the separating fire-resistant walls between units did not meet the relevant fire spread requirements.

The inspector identified that an additional layer of 16mm fire-rated plasterboard had not been installed within the roof spaces – an integral part of the fire-separating wall system.

The builder acknowledged the fault and placed an additional 3.6sq metres of plaster in each roof space. This work was completed without the need for enforcement action.

The VBA has significantly increased its proactive inspection program and is well on track to inspect a minimum of 10 per cent of all open building permits across Victoria every year. In May 2019, the VBA completed proactive inspections of 1102 sites.

The VBA’s acting Executive Director of Operations, David Brockman, said the proactive inspection regime is a successful and effective program.

“VBA inspectors are inspecting hundreds of sites each week and engaging with the industry and the community to ensure a compliant and safe built environment that will benefit all Victorians,” he said.

“If defective work can be rectified without the need for enforcement action, it is a good outcome for everybody involved. Most importantly, it is a positive outcome for Victorians, who can then be assured they are living in safe and compliant homes.”