A request to modify the development consent to replace a second egress from the site with a private bushfire shelter at a primitive camp ground off Pimpala Crescent Mulwala stretching towards the Murray River has been unanimously rejected by Federation Council.
Council considered the proposal not to be in the public interest due to the increased risk to loss of life associated with replacing an alternative egress with a bushfire shelter.
“The site is not considered suitable for the development because of the flood prone nature and bushfire prone nature of the site, and the risk to life and property,” council’s director development and environment report stated.
The egress, council stated, provided protection for all persons regardless of age or health while a bushfire shelter is not intended to meet the broader needs of people with disabilities, respiratory or cardiovascular illnesses, children or the aged as defined in Australian Building Codes.
A greater impost on local emergency services to ensure the safety of occupants of the shelter during and after a bushfire would result according to council.
The building code also defines that the shelter is to be associated with a dwelling and does not reference any other style or type of structure.
When the development application was advertised, six submissions were received. All six submissions objected to the proposed bushfire shelter development.