The Institute for Timber Construction South Africa (ITC-SA), South Africa’s professional body for the timber construction sector, recently hosted a workshop on the practical and legal aspects of SANS 10400 Part L: Roofs to over 30 delegates from the National Department of Public Works in Durban.

A large percentage of buildings do not comply with SANS 10400 Part L: Roofs, with reference to SANS 10243 Manufacture and Erection of Timber Trusses, SANS 10163 Structural use of Timber, SANS 1783 1 & 2 Sawn Softwood Timber, SANS 10005 The Preservative Treatment of Timber and SANS 10082 Timber Frame Buildings.

One of the main contributors to this phenomenon is ignorance among role players about the relevant responsibilities and accountability of each function in the building process. There are many misconceptions within the ranks of some professional practitioners and contractors in the built environment about their involvement up to project completion to ensure that the conditions of the regulations are met.

The municipal building control office relies on the knowledge and integrity of the professional team who designs, oversees, and in the final instance, inspects the roof structures to ensure conformance to the regulations by issuing a certificate of compliance.

As such, as part of its mandate to create and maintain standards in the engineered timber construction industry, the ITC-SA hosted this workshop in lecture format to with an open question and answer session.

Bruce Breedt of the South African Wood Preservers Association (SAWPA) presented on timber treatment, standards and regulations, while Nicky Naidu, KwaZulu-Natal Regional Coordinator of the ITC-SA spoke about the Institute and its role in the industry, touching on the problem of roofing failures. The session concluded with Abe Stears of the South African Technical Auditing Services (SATAS) delivering a presentation on the certification of structural timber.

The workshop was very well received and the ITC-SA is planning to host many more across the country over the coming months.

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