Roofing insulation causes house fires
Fire Police do not enter
Ms Judge said the NSW Fire Brigade had attended 26 fires across the state this year which have been caused by roofing batts being laid incorrectly over down lights.
“Down lights and transformers should never be covered by ceiling insulation because they act like giant firelighters,” Ms Judge said.
“The Australian Standard states that any type of combustible insulation must be 200 mm away from halogen lamps/lights.
“If the insulation is not fixed in place, a fire-resistant barrier should be installed to maintain the required distance and to ensure that the heat dissipates evenly and safely.
“It is important you check your ceiling insulation is installed correctly so you and your family can sleep safely at night.”
The Acting Commissioner of the NSW Fire Brigade, John Benson said insulation fires had occurred in suburbs throughout Sydney as well as regional NSW including Coffs Harbour, Urunga and Cessnock.
“This week we attended a fire at Seven Hills where the quick-thinking actions of residents prevented significant damage,” he said.
“Covering down lights with combustible material like roofing batts is dangerous and puts people’s lives at risk.”
Ms Judge said it was essential that homeowners only used trusted and qualified traders. “Fair Trading has produced a form for installation contractors to sign, confirming they know how to install insulation correctly,” she said. .
“Consumers can download this form at www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au and ask contractors to sign it before they start installing the batts. “If you have any concerns about the quality of the work contact Fair Trading on 13 32 20.
”I have also written to the Federal Minister for the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts to ensure all contractors accredited under the Homeowner Insulation Program are fully aware of the Australian Standard for installation.”