Industry Today

Builders reminded to ensure firefighting equipment is provided during construction

Fire hpse

Concerns have recently been raised about some builders’ failure to adhere to mandated fire safety precautions during the construction process. In these cases builders had not ensured that the required firefighting equipment mandated under Part E1.9 of Volume 1 of the Building Code of Australia (BCA) was provided during construction.

QBCC seeing good outcomes from fire protection (wet system) licensing audits

QBCC inspector showing contractor licence card

The QBCC regularly conducts fire audits on wet systems to ensure that persons conducting fire protection work, namely working with hydrants, hose reels and water base sprinklers, are appropriately licensed. This month one of our QBCC Investigators visited a property in Redlands to conduct a fire audit. The Investigator called ahead to organise a time to visit the property. As a result the occupiers organised for the fire protection company who maintain the building’s fire protection system to be present at the time of the audit.

Fire protection technicians must comply with QBCC and national standards

A fire ablaze

In addition to QBCC licence requirements, national regulations require all technicians who install, decommission, service or maintain gaseous fire suppression systems or portable extinguishers containing ozone depleting substances (ODS) or synthetic greenhouse gases (SGG) (like FM200® and NAF blends) to be licensed with the FPIB (Fire Protection Industry Board). For more information, please read our Tradie Talk blog.

Changes to the Plumbing and Drainage Act

A QBCC representative talking to 2 contractors

The Plumbing and Drainage Act 2018 was approved by Parliament on 11 September 2018. The Act and a new Plumbing and Drainage Regulation will commence in full in mid-2019. Upon commencement, the current Plumbing and Drainage Act 2002 and Regulation will be repealed.

This attached table provides a general overview of the new Act and outlines the differences between the new and current Acts.


Where we’ll be visiting in 2019

Stationary white car with QBCC logo on the driver's door

The Service Trades Council holds industry forums each year across Queensland. These forums provide an opportunity for members of the plumbing, drainage, fire protection, air-conditioning and mechanical services industries to provide feedback and gain important industry information.

The Service Trades Council will be visiting the following locations in 2019:

  • 4 April – Cairns
  • 6 June - Brisbane
  • 8 August – Sunshine Coast
  • 21 November - Toowoomba

Upcoming forum in Moreton Bay

Attendees sitting listening to a speaker at a forum

Are you keen to hear more about the big changes happening across your industry? Do you have ideas and feedback that you would like to contribute? Are you based in the Moreton Bay and Surrounds Region? If yes, then this event is for you.

The Service Trades Council are holding their next industry forum at the Caboolture Hub on Thursday 22 November 2018. This free forum is your opportunity to hear important updates, ask questions and provide feedback on what is happening in your industry.

Topics will include:

Update on the recent forum in Warwick

Attendees at STC forum in Warwick standing outside a building

The Service Trades Council recently visited Warwick in what has been labelled by the local Warwick Daily News as a ‘piping hot forum’. The forum was a success with more than fifty people gathering at the Town Hall to hear important updates from the Service Trades Council, Southern Downs Regional Council, the Department of Housing and Public Works, the Queensland Building and Construction Commission and Ergon Energy. Attendees were invited at the end of the forum to provide advice and ask questions of the presenters.

End of year message from the STC Chair

This year has been a big year of change for the industries that the Service Trades Council represents. We have seen the implementation of the Building Industry Fairness (Security of Payment) Act 2017 (BIF Act) and the establishment of Project Bank Accounts to make sure that sub-contractors get paid regularly and on time. We have also seen significant reforms introduced under the new Plumbing and Drainage Bill 2018. For the first time a new occupational framework for mechanical services work has been introduced in Queensland which will include medical gas as licensed work.

Simpler laws and new safety standards for plumbing and drainage industry

The Queensland Government has made it simpler for plumbers and gasfitters to comply with legislation, passing the Plumbing and Drainage Bill 2018 on 5 September 2018.

Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said the new laws reduced the complexity of the previous Plumbing and Drainage Act 2002 which had been amended by more than 30 separate Bills during the past 15 years, making it hard to work with.