What You Need To Know About Essential Safety Measures (ESM)

Essential Safety Measures (ESM) ensure that a building’s important safety systems are working at the required operational level throughout the life of the building.

What are Essential Safety Measures (ESM)?

Essential Safety Measures are systems, structures, and equipment required in buildings to help ensure the health and safety of occupants. By law, all buildings are required to undergo Essential Safety Measures certification annually.

These items may include:

  • Building fire integrity
  • Means of egress
  • Automatic fire sprinkler systems
  • Fire pump sets
  • Passive fire and smoke systems
  • Emergency and exit lighting
  • Stationary and portable fire equipment
  • Automatic fire detection & alarm systems
  • Emergency warning and intercommunication systems
  • Building clearance and fire appliances
  • Mechanical ventilation & hot, warm & cooling tower water system

Essential Safety Measures (ESM) and a Building Owners Obligation

Under Building Regulations 2006 as an owner or owners corporation you are legally required to:

  • Ensure that the building’s ESMs, such as fire detection and alarm systems and fire extinguishers, have been maintained and can operate during an emergency.
  • Keep fire doors clear of obstructions, closed, and unlocked at all times.
  • Ensure all occupiers know the building’s evacuation plan and fire safety procedures.

Building owners or owners corporations are also required to provide an Annual Essential Safety Measures report and statement, indicating that the essential safety measures have been maintained and that appropriate records of maintenance, service, and repair work are kept.

Consequences of failing to comply

Non-compliance may result in an infringement notice being issued by Council or the Fire Authority, along with a fine. It may also result in prosecution and more substantial fines. More importantly, non-compliance could place building occupants at risk, as well as passers-by and the occupants of adjoining buildings.

Summit Facilities Group offers peace of mind and protection for building owners with our comprehensive service offering. From annual independent auditing for AESMR’s to complete Safety Measure testing and compliance tailored to your building’s specific Occupancy Permit needs. Find out more about our ESM Compliance services here, or contact our team directly to discuss your needs.