There’s a new system for managing buildings in an emergency – what it may mean for you

Posted: 31 July 2019

The Building Amendment Act, which was passed by Parliament in June, provides a new system for quickly and effectively managing buildings during and after an emergency.

The new system and legislative powers will come into effect in December. From that time, after an emergency event, councils will be able to:

  • carry out work to, or demolish, any buildings that pose an immediate risk to life, or risk damage or disruption to neighbouring buildings or public thoroughfares
  • require building owners to provide information, such as detailed engineering assessments, to help determine the risks posed by their buildings
  • require damaged buildings to be repaired or demolished on a case-by-case basis, as appropriate.

The new system for building emergency management provided by the Building Amendment Act was developed in response to the recommendations of the Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission, while the legislative powers for investigating building failures respond to the lessons learned during MBIE’s recent investigations into several significant building failures.

The Building Amendment Act also provides clear legislative powers to allow MBIE to investigate significant building failures.

You can read more on the New Zealand Parliament website.

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: