Combustible Wall Cladding

The Victorian Building Association (VBA) will conduct an audit of 170 buildings because of the fire at the Lacrosse Apartments in Melbourne in November 2014. 

The fire was started by a cigarette on the 8th floor however it was the combustible wall cladding that further fuelled the fire to reach the 21st floor. Damages were approximately $2 million.

The discovery of this non-compliant cladding is now becoming more frequent particularly in Melbourne. 

Poor building product compliance is a major issue in Australia, with evidence showing that the market penetration of non-conforming products in key construction product sectors may be up to 50 per cent. A recent survey by the Australian Industry Group found that 92 per cent of builders surveyed had been offered faulty materials or products to buy.
— Architecture and Design website (1)

A senate enquiry will also examine the impact these products may have on consumers which are imported from China and not tested to Australian standards. Consumer's insurance costs may also be affected.

This product will not be detected by a valuer during an inspection. Clients and insurance brokers need to be vigilant and to find out if any of this external cladding has been installed in any recent building works.

Combustible building cladding has also been discovered at the Royal Freemasons property in Prahran and on an aged care facility in Melbourne.

...the system is clearly failing and Australia has become a dumping ground for some of the world’s dodgiest and most dangerous building products”.
— Senator Nick Xenophon (2)

(1)  Read more "Non-compliant cladding fuelled Melbourne apartment tower fire, MFB finds" - Geraldine Chua, Architecture and Design, 28 April 2015

(2) Read more "Flammable cladding found at old people's home" - Insurance NEWS, 27 July 2015

Read more "Senate launches flammable cladding inquiry" - Insurance NEWS, 29 June 2015