WORK will soon begin to fix a section of cladding at Rockingham General Hospital (RGH), after Aluminium Composite Panels (ACPs) did not meet the requirements of the Building Code of Australia.
The issue was identified following a Department of Health assessment of ACP facade cladding, which was undertaken following the commencement of the Western Australian Building Commission’s Statewide cladding audit.
Similar assessments are being conducted by other agencies on publicly owned buildings, both nationally and overseas, following concerns about the potential fire risks associated with the use of some ACP cladding products.
Department of Health Deputy Director General Rebecca Brown said a specialist fire engineer had assessed the RGH buildings and recommended the ACP cladding on two blocks (C and D) be replaced.
Ms Brown said an alternative replacement would mitigate any potential fire management concerns in the event the outer casing is damaged.
“The safety of our patients and staff is our number one priority and they can be assured that all necessary steps have been taken to ensure their ongoing safety,” Ms Brown said.
“A number of interim mitigation strategies have been implemented, including re-sealing any exposed or damaged cladding, using a non-combustible material, and installing fencing around the building’s external perimeter to limit access to the outer wall.
“All clinical services at Rockingham General Hospital, including elective surgery, are continuing as normal.”
The Department of Health will undertake assessments across a further 11 hospitals, that have met the criteria of potentially having ACP facade cladding. These assessments are due to be completed by mid-September 2018.
The Department is working with Building Management and Works on a plan to replace the affected areas.