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What is the role of an owners corporation?

Cladding Safety Victoria (CSV) assists owners corporations (OCs) to rectify combustible cladding on their apartment buildings. Responsibility for the building always rests with the owners and owners corporations and participation in CSV’s program is entirely voluntary.

However if an owners corporation wants to receive assistance from CSV, they must enter into a formal agreement before funding can be provided.

As the managers of the common property of an apartment building, owners corporations are ultimately responsible for managing and rectifying issues brought to their attention through Building Orders and Building Notices issued by the Victorian Building Authority or the local council. This includes notices and orders in relation to the rectification of combustible cladding.

Owners corporations of buildings within the program will be guided through the process to rectification by Cladding Safety Victoria, who will appoint a Customer Liaison Officer to assist with the process. The owners corporation will be ultimately responsible for the rectification works, with funding where appropriate and expert guidance provided by Cladding Safety Victoria.

Essential Safety Measures

Owners corporations have a legal responsibility for the maintenance of a building’s Essential Safety Measures (ESMs) – the safety features required in a building to protect occupants in the event of a fire. If a fire occurs, well maintained ESMs can provide residents with more time to exit the building and lessen the chance of fire spreading. ESMs require ongoing care and maintenance.

ESMs may include fire detection and alarm systems, fire doors, emergency lighting and fire hydrants.

It is the responsibility of each owners corporation to:

  • ensure that the building's Essential Safety Measures, such as fire detection and alarm systems and fire extinguishers, have been maintained and can operate during an emergency
  • keep fire doors clear of obstructions, closed and unlocked at all times
  • ensure all occupiers know the building’s evacuation plan and fire safety procedures

For more information about ESMs, download the Victorian Building Authority’s Information Sheet.

Reviewed 26 October 2020

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