Aluminium Composite Panel Building Audits
The Department of Planning Transport and Infrastructure (DPTI) is coordinating a building audit in response to recent concerns regarding the use of Aluminium Composite Panels (ACP) on buildings. ACP is frequently used for external cladding or facades, insulation and signage along with internal applications.
The building audit is being delivered across 3 phases with phases 1 and 2 being delivered in collaboration with councils, the Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) and the Country Fire Service (CFS).
Buildings audited as a priority were residential buildings over 2 storeys including hotels, motels and apartments, aged care facilities, hospitals, schools, assembly buildings and buildings with occupants who may be unfamiliar with the means of escape or require assistance to escape.
Audit progress updates
|Phase 1 commenced across South Australia|
|Phase 1 completed in City of Adelaide|
|Phase 2 commenced in City of Adelaide|
|Phase 1 completed in remaining councils|
|Phase 2 commenced in remaining councils|
|Phase 2 completed for public owned buildings and privately owned residential and assembly buildings|
- Summary of the South Australian Building Cladding Audit Interim Report (PDF, 169 KB)
- Fact sheet: Building audit (PDF, 224 KB)
- Fact sheet: Information for owners and occupiers (PDF, 186 KB)
- Fact sheet: Information for councils (PDF, 209 KB)
- Fact sheet: Information about aluminium composite panels (PDF, 252 KB)
- Fact sheet: Information about building fire safety (PDF, 151 KB)
The audit is aimed at identifying buildings that have or may be clad with ACP and providing recommendations and actions to ensure safety.
If at any stage a building is identified as presenting a risk to safety, the State Government, council and the relevant fire authority (MFS or CFS) will take immediate action as appropriate.
A council's Building Fire Safety Committee or regional Building Fire Safety Committee has a broad range of powers to require building owners to ensure safety.
The Commonwealth and all states and territories are also undertaking audits of buildings that have or may have ACP. Concerns with Commonwealth owned buildings should be directed to the Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.
The 3 phases of the audit process are Identification, Investigation and Response.
- building classification;
- height and number of storeys;
- occupancy profile; and
- presence of in-built life safety provisions.
Buildings that have or may have been clad with ACP were identified.
Buildings approved after 2010 with the following characteristics were prioritised, including:
- Residential buildings more than 2 storeys:
- Aged care facilities
- Assembly buildings
- Any buildings with occupants who may be unfamiliar with the means of escape or require assistance to escape
Buildings identified in Phase 1 were investigated. Investigations included site inspections and/or review of approved plans and documentation to determine if the cladding presented a risk to safety.
Under the Development Act 1993 an authorised person may undertake a range of actions if they believe the ACP presents a risk to safety.
These actions range from alerting an owner or occupier of any risk to their safety, through to issuing emergency orders that require immediate action be undertaken.
Phase 1 of the building audit was delivered in collaboration with councils. Identification of buildings in the Adelaide CBD was completed at the end of July 2017. Remaining councils completed Phase 1 in early 2018.
22 councils self reported buildings that warrant further consideration and investigation during Phase 2
- City of Adelaide
- City of Unley
- Kangaroo Island Council
- Town of Gawler
- City of Port Adelaide Enfield
- City of Burnside
- City of Salisbury
- Mount Barker District Council
- City of Norwood, Payneham and St Peters
- Adelaide Hills Council
- City of West Torrens
- Rural City of Murray Bridge
- City of Campbelltown
- City of Port Lincoln
- City of Victor Harbor
- City of Holdfast Bay
- City of Onkaparinga
- Roxby Downs Council
- City of Marion
- City of Playford
- District Council of Copper Coast
- City of Charles Sturt
45 Councils self reported that they have no buildings of concern in Phase 1
- Yorke Peninsula Council
- Wakefield Regional Council
- Alexandrina Council
- Port Augusta Council
- Whyalla City Council
- District Council of Tumby Bay
- District Council of Lower Eyre Peninsula
- The Barossa Council
- District Council of Elliston
- City of Mount Gambier
- Regional Council of Goyder
- Town of Walkerville
- District Council of Grant
- Mid Murray Council
- City of Tea Tree Gully
- District Council of Robe
- District Council of Cleve
- Kingston District Council
- District Council of Peterborough
- Wattle Range Council
- District Council of Barunga West
- Renmark Paringa Council
- District Council of Coober Pedy
- Naracoorte Lucindale Council
- Light Regional Council
- Loxton Waikerie Council
- Mount Remarkable
- Adelaide Plains Council
- District Council of Orroroo Carrieton
- Berri Barmera Council
- Wudinna District Council
- District Council of Streaky Bay
- City of Mitcham
- City of Prospect
- Coorong District Council
- Clare and Gilbert Valleys Council
- Northern Areas Council
- Tatiara District Council
- Southern Mallee District Council
- District Council of Kimba
- Port Pirie Regional Council
- District Council of Karoonda East Murray
- District Council of Franklin Harbour
- District Council of Ceduna
- District Council of Yankalilla
If people have concerns about buildings they own or occupy, they should contact their council Building Fire Safety Committee for further information.
Phase 2 of the building audit was delivered in collaboration with councils. DPTI engaged with council Building Fire Safety Committees who identified buildings in Phase 1 to ensure a consistent approach to investigation.
This phase investigated the type of ACPs present and the installation method used to determine if the cladding presented a risk to life safety. This included a review of building plans and approvals, site visits and comprehensive inspections.
Findings and recommendations of Phase 2 are now complete.
A Summary of the South Australian Building Cladding Audit Interim Report (PDF, 169 KB) has been released to provide further information about the findings to date and the Phase 3 commitments and timelines.
30 buildings have a risk rating of High or above. Owners’ actions to address the audit findings and recommendations will be monitored on a regular basis.
Frequently Asked Questions
After examining thousands of buildings across the state, a detailed audit identified almost 300 residential and assembly buildings with some level of façade cladding present. Details of the Audit findings are now available on this page.
No buildings in South Australia were found to be at a level of risk to warrant evacuation.
Two government-owned buildings with Aluminium Composite Panel (ACP) cladding were risk-rated as High by the Audit and work has already commenced on these buildings that will reduce this to an acceptable level (i.e. Low or Moderate).
28 private buildings with ACP cladding were rated as either High (21) or Extreme (7) risk and local Councils are in communication with building owners.
Recommendations have been made about what should be done by a building owner to reduce this risk to an acceptable level (i.e. Low or Moderate). The remedial or other work required on public buildings will be undertaken in collaboration with the fire safety authorities. Remedial work on private buildings will be overseen by local Councils, the responsible authority for ensuring the safety of private buildings.
For specific information about a building, individual building owners, lessees and tenants should contact the Building Manager or Owners’ Corporation.
Individual building owners, lessees and tenants should contact the Building Manager or Owners’ Corporation for information about your building.
If a building facade does include ACP, this does not necessarily mean the building is unsafe. The Audit was undertaken to clearly establish whether a building has façade ACP cladding, the life safety risk impact of this material on the building, and how that risk can be eliminated or reduced to an acceptable level.
The Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) and the South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Commission (SAFECOM) are closely involved in the Audit process. Their expert advice is that even if a building has some ACP cladding on the façade, if the building’s Active Fire Safety system* and other fire safety measures are sufficient to ensure people would be able to safely exit from a building if a façade fire occurred, then the building may be classified as safe.
*An Active Fire System is fire warning or suppression equipment that may trigger automatically or with intervention, in the event of a fire. It includes sprinklers, fire extinguishers, smoke alarms, automatic fire doors, fire control systems etc.
For more information about a specific building, contact the Building Manager, Owners’ Corporation or local Council.
DPTI has worked with fire safety authorities to identify specific actions that may be taken in response to the Audit to reduce risk to an acceptable level. These may include (but are not limited to);
- removing ACP from around exits
- removing ACP from around firefighting equipment
- removing ACP from the first 3 metres above ground level
- installation of an Active Fire System
- removing ACP within 1m of a balcony.
In private buildings any work to improve the life safety risk should be undertaken in consultation with the Council’s Building Fire Safety Committee and may require a Development Authorisation.
If a government agency owns the building, that agency is responsible for ensuring that all fire safety measures are appropriate and operational, and that any remedial or reparation work required as a result of the Audit is undertaken. This work will be overseen by DPTI, in conjunction with the MFS.
If a building is privately owned, the building owner must adequately maintain the fire safety of their buildings, must annually submit evidence to council that the maintenance has been undertaken. When a Council believes a buildings fire safety is not adequate it must take appropriated action under the Development Act 1993. Councils have the power to enforce. In such circumstance building owners can be required to prepare a report on the adequacy of a building’s fire safety and to develop and implement remedial plans under the guidance of a fire engineer and the Council Building Fire Safety Committee.
The cost of any works undertaken in response to the recommendations of the Audit are the responsibility of the owner of the building.
DPTI will be actively monitoring building owners’ responses to the recommendations made in the Audit in relation to their building. A summary of this information and any further recommendations may be included in the Final Report of the Audit which will be prepared when we have confidence that all buildings have been returned to a safe level.
Buildings determined during phase 2 as requiring improvements to ensure their safety may be subject to rectification work, which may include:
- replacement of the ACPs as part of the general ongoing maintenance routine
- removal of part or all of the ACPs as a matter of urgency
- additional alarms, escape points or sprinklers
- placement of barriers that prevent fire spread, should an ACP catch fire.
For privately owned buildings, councils will be responsible for ensuring that owners address any identified buildings. Government will be responsible for ensuring that its own buildings are safe. Council is responsible for ensuring any building they own are safe.
In many instances a building's existing in-built fire safety systems will provide the level of safety required, if they are maintained in accordance with the relevant standards.