What is a Building Protection Zone (BPZ)?

By choosing WA BAL to undertake a BAL assessment and report, we will be ensuring the preparation of a Bulding Pretection Zone. In preparing your home or business in time for bushfire season, you will increase your chance that it will survive a bushfire. 

What is a Building Protection Zone (BPZ)?

The aim of this zone is to ensure that there will be no direct flame contact to the building from a bushfire. By utilising fuel management options, it will also be possible to reduce the potential radiant heat impact on the building. 

If there is little or nothing to burn, the fire's impact will be reduced which can be achieved by:

  • Maintaining a minimum 2 metre gap between trees and the building, making sure that no trees overhang the house;
  • Ensuring that trees crowns are a minimum of 10 metres apart;
  • Ensuring there is a gap between shrubs and buildings of three times their mature height;
  • Ensuring that shrubs are not planted in clumps;
  • Keeping the grass short and prune the scrub so that it is not dense, nor does it have fine, dead aerated material in the crown of the scrub;
  • Raking up leaf litter amd twigs unde trees and removing trailing bark;
  • Pruning lower branches (up to 2 metres off the ground) to stop a surface fire spreading to the canpoy of the trees; 
  • Creating a mineral each firebreak;
  • Having your paths adjacent to the building and have your driveway placed so that it maximese the protection to the house;
  • Storing firewood away from the building;
  • Ensuring fences and sheds are constructed using non- combustible material, but preferably not located in the BPZ;
  • Keeping your gutters free of leaves and other combustible material;
  • Ensuring gas bottles are secured and positioned so that they will vent away from the building, if subject to flame contact or radiant heat. 

bushfirefacts

1. Do not pile wood against or near the house

2. Install a fire or heat radiation shield such as a solid fence

3. Place metal fly wire mesh on all windows or vents to keep sparks and embers out

4. Block any gaps under floor spaces, in the roof space, under eaves, external vents, skylights, evaporative air conditioners, chimneys and wall cladding

5. Create and maintain a minimum two metre gap between your house and tree branches

6. Rake up leaf litter and twigs under trees

7. Remove shrubs and small trees under and between larger trees

8. Ensure that garden mulch is kept away from the house and grass is kept short

9. Ensure that all gaps in external wall claddings are sealed

10. Keep roof gutters and valleys clear of leaves and bark

11. Keep gas cylinders on the side of the house furthest away from the likely direction of bushfires (where bush is)

12. Block any gaps in the roof space

13. Hoses must be long enough to reach all parts of your house. Use metal hose fittings for taps as they are less likely to melt

14. Remove flammable materials and store them away from the house

15. Make sure there is water - it is likely you will lose water and power supplies during a bushfire. It is important that you have an alternative water supply. You will need a petrol, diesel or generator powered pump to draw water from dams, pools or a water tank.