Cladding used at Brisbane‘s Princess Alexandra Hospital may be unsafe, and has been taken for testing by authorities, says the Queensland Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni.
After the Queensland Building and Construction Commission voiced concern, the Department of Housing and Public Works opened up an investigation into Princess Alexandra’s building records.
Officers from the Commission, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, and the Department have taken samples of the cladding used in various parts of the building for testing. They expect to know within days if the product is or is not fire-retardant.
De Brenni said:
“This week information was provided to me regarding the possibility of non-fire retardant cladding on a building at the PA Hospital.
“Yesterday officers from the QBCC, QFES and HPW took samples of the cladding for testing. At this stage the status of the product is unknown and further samples are being removed for testing.
“Our advice is that the risk of any incident would be low and we have taken action to increase security around the building while the testing continues.”
QFES Commissioner Katarina Carroll said that the hospital adheres to strict fire safety standards: “The PA Hospital has state of the art fire facilities with sprinklers, fire alarms and evacuation systems. These systems have been inspected by QFES officers and they are compliant.”
Worldwide concern about building materials used in cladding was spurred by the Grenfell Tower disaster in west London earlier this month, where a fire started by a fridge freezer is suspected to have spread so quickly because of the highly flammable material. In Victoria, over 20 buildings contain similar cladding, while in New South Wales, there are 2,500 buildings covered in it.
The Housing and Public Works Minister also announced the creation of an Audit Taskforce to investigate any buildings constructed between 1994 and 2004 that may have used aluminium composite cladding.
Source: The Courier-Mail.
Photo: Spine Society.