Requirements for temporary structures

Temporary structures such as tents, marquees or entertainment stages may be classified as public buildings and be required to comply with the Health Act (Public Building) Regulations 1992 (external site) and any other requirements set by local government as part of the public building approval.

Local government administers these regulations. This means that every time a structure is erected local government may require a formal application and approval. To assist both operators and local governments and to give some uniformity of standards, the Department is prepared to assess structures that tour WA and if satisfied provide a letter of compliance to the operator to assist local authorities in making their assessments and minimise any administration fees.

Requirements for assessment

To enable an assessment the department requires:

  • Certification of the design of the structure and seating by the manufacturer’s structural engineer, or a certificate from a practising structural engineer to show that the structure is suitable for the use it is to be put. Note: Assessment certificates should show who, where and when the assessment was made.
  • Test reports to show the flammability indexes of the structure and any curtain or lining materials.
  • A drawing showing the layout of the structure that includes:
    • the size of the structure
    • seating layout
    • areas set aside for the public and staff, performers, etc.
    • exits.
  • Details of the seating used, for example bleacher, continental or chairs.
  • Details and locations of fire fighting appliances.
  • Indicate to what wind strength you will operate.
  • Details of holding down provisions – driven pegs or ballast.
  • Details of the electrical installation:
    • supply authority mains or on site generators
    • number location and size of generators to be used.

Electrical installations

Electrical extension leads need to have been tested and tagged by an electrical contractor within the last 6 months.

Portable power outlet devices should be equipped with residual current devices (RCDs) and similarly tested and tagged.

Electrical cords need to be buried or otherwise installed away from the public. Lamps etc need to be out of reach of the public.

Permanent installations should be subject to a Form m5, electrical certification by an electrical contractor.

More information about electrical and lighting requirements.

Exit signs

Every exit must be identified with an exit sign, which must:

  • be illuminated whenever the public is in attendance
  • be connected to a mains supply and have an alternative battery supply
  • comply with AS/NZS 2293 and AS/NZS 3000.

Emergency lighting

Emergency lighting must be connected to a battery supply and operate on failure of the normal power supplies. However, for temporary situations if the lighting is distributed between 2 generators or a generator and a supply authority supply, emergency lighting may not be required.

Evacuation plan

An evacuation plan needs to be in place. A minimum requirement is that staff have set responsibilities to assist in the evacuation of the public.

More information

  • For information about organising an event, or information related to a public building, contact the relevant local government Environmental Health Services where the event or building is located. Refer to the online local government directory (external site) for contact details. Ask to speak to an Environmental Health Officer. 
  • For events or public buildings located in Kings Park, Rottnest Island, or locations not within a local government district, contact the Environmental Health Directorate by emailing Public.Events@health.wa.gov.au or call 9222 2000
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Public Health