What is an Annual Fire Safety Statement (AFSS)?
An AFSS is an annually issued document Signed by the owner of a premises or his nominated agent to state that:-
1) They have selected a Properly Qualified Person to conduct the assessment of installed fire safety measures on their premises.
2) That the installed fire safety measures at their premises are being maintained to a standard not less than that to which it is was installed to.
3) That he/she attests that he has not contravened Division 7 of the EP&A Regulation relating to Clauses 183, 184, 185 & 186 pertaining to exits, doors and paths of travel to an exit.
4) Dated so that it has a limited period of validity of 12 months.
Note: The Annual Fire Safety Statement is not a statement of compliance nor is it a document that details faults, incorrect or non compliant installation of a fire safety measure, quite simply it is a maintenance statement not a compliance statement.
Remember: The Annual Fire Safety Statement is simply a document that attests to the maintenance of statutory Fire Safety measures and states the clauses in the EP&A Regulation have not been breached.
Can I submit an AFSS when the building has defects and non compliances?
Yes, providing that the essential fire safety measures can still perform to a standard no less than that specified in the fire safety schedule, simply meaning that minor non compliances are not sufficient reason to delay submitting the AFSS.
However, if the system is significantly impaired unable to perform then the relevant council and NSW Fire & Rescue must be notified.
Can my service provider withhold their Annual System Condition Report and Annual Fire Safety Statement due to outstanding quoted works in order to them approved?
No, the service provider is to submit the Annual System Condition Report as it is states that they have inspected, tested, maintained and surveyed the essential fire safety measures, and reports on any system defects.
As service providers are not required to sign and submit the AFSS they cannot hold building owners or their agents to ransom to have works approved.
Who is a properly qualified person/s?
Properly qualified person/s are the Service Providers and Contractors engaged to carry out the inspection, testing, maintenance & survey under the Australian standard for the Maintenance of Fire Protection Systems and Equipment AS1851-2012. These include the Fire Protection Service Provider, Air Conditioning Service Provider, Lift Maintenance Contractor as well as Electrical & Plumbing Contractor’s.
Who is responsible for the submission of AFSS?
The building owner or nominated agent is responsible for the submission of the AFSS either by signing the statement themselves or installing a representative to do so on their behalf.
The service providers and contractors are NOT responsible for the submission of the AFSS as they are not the building owner or nominated agent.
Where is the AFSS submitted and displayed?
A copy of the AFSS together with a copy of the current fire safety schedule must be forwarded to the Relevant Council and the Building Compliance Unit of NSW Fire & Rescue (Fire Brigade) Private Locked Bag 12, Greenacre NSW 2190.
A copy of the AFSS together with the relevant fire safety schedule must be displayed prominently in the building, usually in the main foyer or office entry in a position where is can be easily seen.
What is a fire safety schedule?
A fire safety schedule is a list of the essential fire safety measures details the standards of performance i.e. Australian Installation Standards and Relevant Building Codes & Ordinances.