How lucky are we to live in Australia? It is a life beyond compare, however for some Australian communities the risk of bushfires is an ever-increasing threat. Unprecedented dryness, high temperatures and strong winds create a tinderbox, carrying fires over larger distances and putting homes at risk.
The Australian building standard, AS3959 outlines specifics for the construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas. The aim of this code is to improve a home’s resistance to bushfire attacks, embers, radiant heat and flames.
Understanding the Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) of your home, whether a new construction or a renovated existing home is the first step you need to take to ensure you comply with the standard. BAL levels are based on the Fire Danger Index (air temperature, relative humidity, wind speed and drought impacts), the surrounding vegetation and proximity to it, the slope of the land and slope direction.
In total there are 6 Bushfire Attack Levels and knowing your level will not only help you prepare your home to the right level, but also make you aware of the risk around your home and property. You may need to choose doors and frames that meet the specific regulatory requirements of building in designated bushfire zones and are Bal-40 tested and compliant, so make sure you do your homework.
The BAL 40 (very high) is the second highest bushfire attack level and is designed to protect buildings from catching fire in the presence of windborne embers and smaller secondary fires triggered by those embers.
If you need to fit BAL40 compliant doors, speak to Doors Apart about your options and necessary considerations.