What a year 2015 has been in fire protection and in the built environment more generally.
This year has seen us pass the tipping point of meaningful reform in almost every state and territory with regard the need for all individuals working on lifesaving fire protection systems and equipment to require some form of accreditation or licensing.
As 2015 draws to a close, I am pleased that most state and territory governments are moving towards ensuring that only trained, competent and accredited individuals are able to design, install, commission and certify important life safety measures in Australian buildings.
In addition, national harmonisation of requirements for routine servicing of fire protection systems and equipment is now complete, with all states and territories formally adopting AS 1851-2012 with Victoria being the final state to do so (read more in this issue of FireSignals). This is a major milestone and a significant positive step for the industry and the community.
Important too is the continued positive reform occurring in the bushfire space around the country. Most recently, Western Australia has taken a number of very positive steps to ensure that individuals conducting bushfire planning and design work in the West are trained, competent and accredited.
Finally the 2016 Fire Australia & HazMat Conference & Tradeshow is shaping up to be the largest event ever held by our Association and I look forward to seeing many of you at this important event, which brings together both the largest fire protection and hazardous materials conferences together under one roof at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre in May.
In 2016 we will continue to work hard delivering on our 2020 vision for the fire protection industry: That all individuals working in the industry will be 'fit for action' (competent and accredited) and all products will be 'fit for purpose' by the year 2020. This vision can only be realised by continuing to closely engage with our members, the fire protection industry, policymakers and the public. These goals must remain at the forefront of our activities, in order to continue to minimise the impact of fire on life, property and the environment, for a safer community.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, all of the staff at the National Office, our valued volunteers and the members I would like to wish you a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year. I look forward to more great success together in 2016.