Laws designed to reduce the impact of bushfire will affect property owners on one hectare or more of land and located within 100m of bushland from April 8, 2016.
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The State Government has announced a whole of government approach to address recommendations made by the Perth Hills bushfire of 2011.
Key measures include:
- Creation of a map of bushfire prone areas, which identifies the areas of Western Australia that have been designated as bushfire prone by order of the Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner (FES Commissioner)
- New planning requirements for development in designated bush fire prone areas
From April 8, 2016 all building applications within the designated bushfire prone areas must include a specific Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) report.
The BAL will provide an assessment rating for the property and trigger differing construction methods in line with Australian Standards (AS)3959 designed to help protect buildings from the impact of bushfires.
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The new regulations are not retrospective and existing homes will not need to be upgraded unless they require new building works.
For more information about designated Bushfire Prone Areas, visit the Department of Commerce website.
The Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) has a range of information and documents available on their website HERE.
The Building Commission has also published a useful homeowner’s guide for building in bushfire areas.