With around 50 Australian children falling from windows and balconies each year, many of which result in serious injuries or are fatal, the NSW Department of Fair Trading has introduced new window lock laws.
Strata owners will need to be compliant to the new laws by 13 March 2018, or risk fines.
The following points are some of the key changes that will affect strata owners :
1. Required to install safety devices on risk-prone windows
Owners Corporations will be required to install safety devices on all openable windows above the ground level that are accessible to children from inside the building if:
– lowest part of the window is less than 1.7 meters above the floor; and
– the internal floor under the window is 2 meters or more above the outside surface
2. Covers all buildings in the strata scheme
Owners Corporations must ensure that there are complying window safety devices for all windows of each building in the strata scheme which need to be fitted with safety devices
3. Safety devices must be suitable and limit widow openings
Owners Corporations must ensure that installed safety devices will be able to limit the maximum window opening to 12.5 centimetres. It should also be robust and childproof. Window locks and safety screens are considered suitable window safety devices, but ordinary insect screens are not.
4. Safety device installation overrides by-laws
Owners can install safety devices regardless of the by-laws of the strata scheme.
5. Safety devices are now part of the prescribed rental condition report
Owners are to include window safety devices in the prescribed condition report for rental premises.
6. Compliance by 13 March 2018
Owners Corporations have been given five years to fit window safety devices from 13 March 2013 until the deadline on 13 March 2018.
With so many new provisions, strata owners and owners corporations can consider hiring a strata manager to help carry out window lock installations in a smooth, systematic and cost-effective manner.
Contact Shane Ball [email : firstname.lastname@example.org], Licensed Strata Manager and Managing Director at PRECISION STRATA to find out how a strata manager can help you comply with new window lock laws.