A senior State Government minister has given a dire warning about Queensland’s construction sector if building certifiers cannot obtain this necessary insurance to do their jobs.
Glen Norris, The Courier-MailSubscriber only|June 7, 2019 1:47pm
QUEENSLAND’S $50 billion construction industry could come to a standstill if a public indemnity insurance crisis sparked by the combustible cladding issue was not resolved.
The warning comes from Housing and Public Works Minister Mick De Brenni who said the state’s 400 private building certifiers were finding it increasingly difficultto obtain the necessary public indemnity insurance to sign off on building obtaining cladding.
“If there is not certainty soon buildings will not be occupied and construction will come to a standstill,” Mr De Brenni said. “We are in danger of seeing an entire profession (certifiers) wiped out.”
He said a national response was needed to the crisis with the last insurer offering exclusion free insurance not accepting policies after July 2. Insurers were not prepared to insure against the risk of a fire where cladding was present.
Flammable cladding was blamed for the 2017 Grenfell tower disaster in west London and has been linked to high-rise fires in Australia.
Certifiers, whose job is to ensure building work complies with regulations and codes, must have professional indemnity insurance before the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) issues them with a licence.
Mr De Brenni noted that a landmark decision by the Victoria Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) this year into liability for the Lacrosse building fire in Melbourne where cladding was present had apportioned most of the blame on the building certifier.