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  • Distributors Aluminium Balustrade Certification

    Balustrade Regulations in Australia

    Balustrades are built to prevent people from falling over a raised surface above ground. They can be erected from a variety of reasonably strong materials including concrete, bricks, glass, timber, aluminium or steel that can withstand human impact. A balustrade is meant for the safety of humans and is generally built on the edge of stairways, corridors, terraces, balconies, verandas, patios and mezzanines.

    Since it is a safety device, a balustrade must confirm to certain standards that prevent faulty construction or improper use of material. Balustrade certification is therefore essential to ensure that the standards set out by the authorities have been complied with.

    The Building Code of Australia (BCA) lays down the standards for balustrade certification. According to these standards, the minimum height of a balustrade should be 1 meter above the finished floor surface. These are the minimum requirements which do not prevent the builder from constructing something larger and stronger than specified in the rules.

    Section of the BCA specifies the balustrade safety standards that must be complied with when constructing balustrades in Australia. These are the general safety standards:

    • Balustrades on stairways must not be less than 0.865m in height from the nosing line.
    • Balustrades erected on balconies, access pathways, landings or corridors must be at least 1 meter in height from the finished floor surface.
    • Any openings in the balustrade should not allow a 125mm wide sphere to pass through. In case of stairs, this is considered above the nosing line.
    • For a balustrade that is 4meters or more in height, there should be no horizontal elements within it between 150mm and 760mm from the floor level that will assist climbing.

    In case of glass balustrades, the safety standards are different, taking into account the safety criteria in relation to the use of glass in buildings and homes. The standards are laid down in Australian Standard AS1288-2006 (AS1288). These standards specify all the aspects right from the type of glass you can use to the way it must be installed as well as the safety features that must be adhered to.

    Handrails form an important component of a balustrade and must also comply with balustrade regulations set out by the BCA. The rules specify the materials to be used for handrails, as well as where and how they should be installed.

    As per the Australian Law, builders must not only comply with the balustrade regulations but they must also provide a certificate to that effect. Upon completion of the work, the installer must provide a balustrade certification with details such as:

    • 1. Address of property and date when balustrade was installed
    • 2. Credentials of the company or person installing the balustrade
    • 3. Whether the balustrade is BCA standards compliant or a specially engineered design
    • 4. Section and clause under which the balustrade in question meets the BCA terms and conditions.

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