What types of buildings are required to have smoke alarms In South Australia?


Smoke alarms serve an important purpose in fire safety. Often, fatalities during a fire are caused by smoke. Smoke detection can help to save lives as well as minimize damage to persons or property.

When determining the appropriate smoke detection devices for your location you should also consider the Australian Standards and regulations regarding smoke alarms.

In South Australia there are specific regulations for buildings and smoke alarms. In Regulation 76B of the Australian Regulations Development Act of 1993, all class 1 and class 2 buildings must have smoke alarms that comply with Australian Standard 3786. The class 1 and 2 buildings include single family dwellings, boarding homes, guest homes, hostels and attached or detached sole-occupancy units that do not exceed 300m2 in size. Larger buildings with similar purpose would require a commercial fire alarm system, while the class 1 and 2 buildings consider residential smoke detectors acceptable.

fire Alarms South Australia
After 1995 any new class 1 or 2 dwelling is required to have installed at least one hard wired 240 volt mains power supply smoke detector. The detector should also have a battery backup installed to provide power in the event electricity is not available during an emergency. There is an exception for buildings that do not have a mains power connection to have detectors with a 10 year life, non-replaceable permanently connected battery.

Buildings that have had a change in ownership after 1 February 1998 will also be required to have a mains connected smoke alarm or the 10 year non replaceable battery smoke detector, depending on the electric connection availability.

For buildings that have not had a change of ownership and existed prior to 1995, a working smoke alarm must be installed that has a minimum of 9 volt battery power.

Smoke alarm placement is important in order to properly detect smoke and potential fires while alerting occupants clearly and as quickly as possible. The installation of smoke alarms should be determined based on several criteria:

Review escape routes and place smoke detectors between bedrooms and the escape areas. Living areas and bedrooms should have nearby detectors for proper alerts to occupants.

Every sleeping area should have at least one smoke detector installed in the exit areas to make sure occupants can be alerted of potential smoke or fire emergencies.

Multi-storeyed buildings should have a smoke detector on each level near stairways so that occupants can quickly identify escape routes even if visibility is not available.

Interconnected alarms are recommended when more than one alarm is installed in a building. This provides a simultaneous alert to everyone in the building for the most effective alarm and quickest reaction to the emergency.

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