Dozens of building practitioners linked to 790 properties with unsafe, non-compliant combustible cladding have been the subject of enforcement action by the Victorian Building Authority (VBA).
The practitioners were identified through the Statewide Cladding Audit which has inspected more than 3200 properties since it began in 2018.
The VBA’s enforcement action has focused on those practitioners responsible for the more serious contraventions of their obligations and those associated with multiple higher risk sites.
To date, 39 practitioners have been subject to enforcement action by the VBA.
VBA Chief Executive Officer Sue Eddy said holding practitioners to account for their actions sends a clear message that unsafe, non-compliant work will not be tolerated.
“We’ve taken decisive action against those practitioners who have put the lives of Victorians at risk through the use of non-compliant, combustible cladding.”
“The use of non-compliant combustible cladding has led to immense stress and heartache for homeowners and caused untold damage to the reputation of the building industry.”
Practitioners who continued to do the wrong thing after the risks associated with combustible cladding were widely recognised and industry’s understanding regarding the use of aluminium composite panels and other combustible materials improved, have been the focus of the VBA’s enforcement action.
Ms Eddy said that the action taken by the VBA was aimed at restoring confidence in the industry and working with practitioners to avoid a repeat of the current cladding situation we are seeing around the world.
“Those practitioners who have done the wrong thing are in the very small minority, but their actions have unfortunately raised a question mark over the practices of the wider industry – which isn’t fair.”
“Part of holding practitioners to account is to send a clear message to the community that the vast majority of practitioners do the right thing.”
While monetary penalties handed out include fines of up to $45,000, the bigger deterrent is cancelling licenses or registrations, meaning practitioners are unable to work for up to three years.
“Our focus since the start of the Statewide Cladding Audit has been on the safety of residents and the wider community,” Ms Eddy said.
“Combustible cladding is an international problem and Victoria has led the world in responding to it.”