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An information source for the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act of SA and related Architectural Profession.

Building Standards
Act

To provide for the promotion of uniformity in the law relating to the erection of buildings in the areas of jurisdiction of local authorities; for the prescribing of building standards; and for matters connected therewith.

National Building
Regulations

Regulations made in terms of section 17(1) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act, 1977 (Act No. 103 of 1977).




Review Board
Regulations

Regulations made in terms of section 20 read with section 9 of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act, 1977 (Act 103 of 1977).



SANS
Standards

Published applicable SANS 10400 Standards.







NBR&BS Act


NBR&BS Act - Download - PDF

Incorporates legislative amendments published in Gazette No. 34586 dated 09 September 2011 - Environmental Sustainability and updated to include the Review Board Regulations. 

REGULATIONS UNDER THE NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS AND BUILDING STANDARDS ACT, 1977 (ACT No. 103 OF 1977)

No: R. 2378     12 October 1990
REGULATIONS UNDER THE NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS AND BUILDING STANDARDS ACT, 1977 (ACT No. 103 OF 1977)

The Minister of Trade and Industry and Tourism has, after consultation with the council, under section 17(1) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act, 1977 (Act No. 103 of 1977), made the regulations in the Schedule.

No: R 432     8 March 1991
THE NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS AND BUILDING STANDARDS ACT, 1977 COMMENCEMENT OF THE NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS

I, Kent Diederich Skelton Durr, Minister of Trade and Industry and Tourism, acting under section 17(3)(b) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act, 1977 (Act No. 103 of 1977), hereby fix 8 March 1991 as the date on which the National Building Regulations published under Government Notice No. R. 2378 of 12 October 1990, and altered by me with the concurrence of the council as set out in the Schedule hereto, shall come into operation.
K.D.S. DURR
Minister of Trade and Industry and Tourism

No: R 574     30 May 2008
NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS AND BUILDING STANDARDS ACT,1977 ( ACT 103 OF 1977 ) NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS

I, Mandisi Mpahlwa, Minister of Trade and Industry, hereby under section 17(3) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act (Act No. 103 of 1977), and on the recommendation of the Council of the South African Bureau of Standards, declare the regulations, as set out in the Schedule, to come into operation on the 1 October 2008.
M. Mpahwa
Minister of Trade and Industry

No: R 711     9 September 2011
NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS AND BUILDING STANDARDS ACT,1977 ( ACT 103 OF 1977 ) INTRODUCTION OF AMENDMENTS TO THE NATIONAL BUILDING REGULATIONS TO INTRODUCE REQUIREMENTS FOR ENERGY USAGE IN BUILDINGS

I, Dr Rob Davies, Minister of Trade and Industry, hereby under section 17(1) of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act (Act 103 of 1977) and on the recommendation of the Board of the National Regulator of Compulsory Specifications, amend the National Building Regulations, as set out in the Schedule, with effect from the date two (2) months from publication of this notice.
Dr. R Davies MP
Minister of Trade and Industry 

NBROverview


NBR - Nature and Background

Overview Concept Map
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Document provides clarity on the legislative framework within which the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act No. 103 of 1977 exists.
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[Published with kind permission of the NRCS.]


Part AZ

AZ1. Coming Into Operation

These amended regulations shall in terms of section 17(3) of the Act come into operation on 1 October 2008.

AZ2. Definitions

In these regulations any word or expression to which a meaning has been assigned in the Act, shall bear that meaning and, unless the context indicates otherwise -

"acceptable", "adequate", "satisfactory"  means acceptable, adequate, satisfactory - 

    (a) in the opinion of any local authority; or 

     (b) in relation to any document issued by the council, in the opinion of the council; 

"action"  means an assembly of concentrated or distributed mechanical forces acting on a building or the cause of deformations imposed on the building or constrained in it;

"Agrément certificate"  means a certificate that confirms fitness-for-purpose of a non-standardised product, material or component or the acceptability of the related non-standardised design and the conditions pertaining thereto (or both) issued by the Board of Agrément South Africa; 

"air duct"  means any pipe, tube, conduit or enclosed space used or to be used in any building for the transmission of air in an artificial ventilation system; 

"applicant"  means any person who makes an application;

"application"  means an application contemplated in section 4 of the Act;

"approval"  means 

    (a) approval by any local authority, including approval contemplated in section 7(7)(b) of the Act; or 

     (b) approval by the review board on appeal to the review board in terms of the Act;

"approved"  means 

    (a) approved by any local authority; or

    (b) approved by the review board on appeal to the review board in terms of the Act;

"artificial ventilation system"  means a system in which air is caused to circulate through a room by means of a mechanical apparatus which forces air into or extracts air from such room; 

"branch discharge pipe"  means a horizontal discharge pipe conveying the discharge from one or more sanitary fixtures to a discharge stack; 

"Board of Agrément South Africa"  the body that operates under the delegation of authority of the Minister of Public Works; 

"building line"  in relation to a site, means a line prescribed in any town planning scheme or any other law designating the boundaries of the area of the site outside of which the erection above ground of any building is prohibited; 

"capacity"  of any storage tank means the volume of such tank between the operating level of the water contained in such tank and the invert of the outlet from the tank;

"carport"  means a building intended to provide shelter for a motor vehicle, caravan or boat and having a roof but having walls on not more than two sides;

"chemical closet"  means a closet with a fixed pan, the excreta from which pass into a tank where they are acted upon by chemicals which sterilize and break them down;

"chimney"  means that part of a building which forms part of a flue, but does not include a flue pipe;

"cleaning eye"  means any access opening to the interior of a discharge pipe or trap provided for the purposes of internal cleaning, and which remains permanently accessible after completion of the drainage installation; 

"combustible"  means the opposite of non-combustible;

"common drain"  means that portion of a drain which conveys sewage other than or in addition to that sewage which emanates from the site through which such drain runs;

"communication pipe"  means any pipe in a water supply system to which any water installation is connected; 

"competent person"  means a person who is qualified by virtue of his education, training, experience and contextual knowledge to make a determination regarding the performance of a building or part thereof in relation to a functional regulation or to undertake such duties as may be assigned to him in terms of these regulations;

"connecting sewer"  means a pipe vested in the local authority which connects a drain to a sewer;

"conservancy tank"  means a covered tank used for the reception and temporary retention of sewage and which requires emptying at intervals; 

"contaminated land"  means any land that, due to substances contained within or under it, is in a condition that presents an unacceptable risk to the health and safety of occupants of buildings constructed on such land;

"deemed-to-satisfy provision"  means non-mandatory requirement, the compliance with which ensures compliance with a functional regulation;

"discharge pipe"  means a pipe which conveys the discharge from a sanitary fixture to a drain, and includes a soil pipe, a waste pipe, a discharge stack, a branch discharge pipe or a fixture discharge pipe; 

"discharge stack"  means any vertical discharge pipe which conveys the discharge from two or more sanitary fixtures and which is connected directly to a drain;

"dolomite land"  means land underlain by dolomite or limestone rock directly or at a shallow depth less than: 

     (a) 60m in areas underlain by limestone; 

     (b) 60m in areas underlain by dolomite where no de-watering has taken place and the local authority has jurisdiction, is monitoring and has control over the groundwater levels over the areas under consideration; or 

    (c) 100m in areas underlain by dolomite where de-watering has taken place or where the local authority has no jurisdiction or control over groundwater levels.

"drain"  means that part of any drainage installation outside a building and which is below ground level, but shall not include the following - 

     (a) any discharge pipe; 

     (b) that portion of a discharge stack which is below ground level; 

     (c) the bend at the foot of a discharge stack;

"drainage installation"  means any installation vested in the owner of a site and which is situated on such site and is intended for the reception, conveyance, storage or treatment of sewage, and may include sanitary fixtures, traps, discharge pipes, drains, ventilating pipes, septic tanks, conservancy tanks, sewage treatment works, or mechanical appliances associated therewith;

"dwelling house"  means a single dwelling unit and any garage and other domestic outbuildings thereto, situated on its own site;

"dwelling unit"  means a unit containing one or more habitable rooms and provided with adequate sanitary and cooking facilities;

"emergency route"  means that part of an escape route which provides fire protection to the occupants of any building and which leads to an escape door;

"escape door"  means that door in an escape route which, at ground level, leads directly to a street or public place or to any approved open space which leads to a street or public place;

"escape route"  means the entire path of travel from the furthest point in any room in a building to the nearest escape door and may include an emergency route;

"exit door"  means any door that is a component of an escape route from any room;

"fire installation"  means any water installation which conveys water solely for the purpose of fire-fighting;

"fire resistance"  means the shortest period for which a building element or component will comply with the requirements for stability, integrity and insulation when tested in accordance with SANS 10177-2;

"fixture discharge pipe"  means a discharge pipe which conveys the discharge from a single sanitary fixture;

"flammable"  means having a closed cup flash point lower than 90degC;

"floor area"  in relation to a building or a storey thereof, means the total area enclosed within its external walls, exclusive of the area occupied by any lift shaft;

"flue"  means a passage which conveys the discharge of a heat generating appliance to the external air;

"flue pipe"  means a pipe forming a flue but does not include a pipe built as a lining into a chimney;

"foundation"  means that part of a building which is in direct contact with and is intended to transmit loads to the ground;

"foundation wall"  means that portion of a wall between the foundation and the lowest floor above such foundation;

"french drain"  means a trench filled with suitable material which is used for the disposal of liquid effluent from a septic tank or waste water;

"functional regulation"  means a regulation that sets out in qualitative terms what is required of a building or building element or building component in respect of a particular characteristic without specifying the method of construction, dimensions or material to be used;

"garage"  means an enclosed area which is used or intended to be used for the parking, storing, servicing or repairing of motor vehicles;

"geotechnical site investigation"  the process of evaluating the geotechnical character of a site in the context of existing or proposed works or land usage, which may include one or more of the following: 

    (a) evaluation of the geology and hydrogeology of the site;

    (b) examination of existing geotechnical information pertaining to the site;

    (c) excavating or boring in soil or rock and the systematic description of the soil and rock profiles;

    (d) determining the depth of any fill that might be present;

    (e) in-situ assessment of geotechnical properties of materials;

    (f) recovery of samples of soil or rock for examination, identification, recording, testing or display;

    (g) testing of soil or rock samples to quantify properties relevant to the purpose of the investigation;

    (h) evaluation of geotechnical properties of tested soils; and

    (i) reporting the results;

"gully"  means a pipe fitting incorporating a trap into which waste water is discharged;

"habitable room"  means a room used or designed, erected, adapted or intended to be used by persons for sleeping in, living in, the preparation or consumption of food or drink, the transaction of business, the rendering of professional services, the manufacture, processing or sale of goods, the performance of work, the gathering together of persons or for recreational purposes;

"industrial effluent"  means any liquid whether or not containing matter in solution or suspension which is given off in the course of or as a result of any industrial, trade, manufacturing, mining or chemical process or any laboratory, research or agricultural activity, and includes any liquid other than soil water, waste water or stormwater;

"inspection"  means the general inspection by a competent person of a system or measure or installation of a building, or part thereof, at such intervals as might be necessary in accordance with accepted professional practice to enable such competent person to be satisfied that the design assumptions are valid, the design is being correctly interpreted and the work is being executed generally in accordance with the designs, appropriate construction techniques and good practice but shall exclude detailed supervision and day-to-day inspection;

"inspection chamber"  means a chamber not deeper than 750mm and of such dimension that access may be obtained to a drain without requiring a person to enter into such chamber;

"inspection eye"  means any access opening to the interior of any pipe or pipe fitting in a drainage installation provided solely for the purpose of inspection and testing, and to which permanent access after completion of the drainage installation need not be provided;

"load"  means the value of a force corresponding to an action;

"manhole"  means a chamber of a depth greater than 750mm and of such dimension that allows entry of a person into such chamber for the purpose of providing access to a drain;

"minor building work"  as contemplated in section 13 of the Act means - 

     (a) the erection of any - 

        (i) poultry house not exceeding 10sqm in area; 

         (ii) aviary not exceeding 20sqm in area; 

        (iii) solid fuel store not exceeding 10sqm in area and 2m in height; 

         (iv) tool shed not exceeding 10sqm in area; 

         (v) child's playhouse not exceeding 5sqm in area; 

         (vi) cycle shed not exceeding 5sqm in area; 

         (vii) greenhouse not exceeding 15sqm in area; 

         (viii) open-sided car, caravan or boat shelter or a carport where such shelter or carport does not exceed 40sqm in area; 

        (ix) any free-standing wall constructed of masonry,concrete, steel, aluminium or timber or any wire fence where such wall or fence does not exceed 1,8m in height at any point above ground level and does not retain soil; 

         (x) any pergola; 

         (xi) private swimming pool; 

         (xii) change room, not exceeding 10sqm in area, at a private swimming pool; 

     (b) the replacement of a roof or part thereof with the same or similar material; 

     (c) the conversion of a door into a window or a window into a door without increasing the width of the opening; 

     (d) the making of an opening in a wall which does not affect the structural safety of the building concerned; 

     (e) the partitioning or the enlarging of any room by the erection or demolition of an internal wall if such erection or demolition does not affect the structural safety of the building concerned; 

     (f) the erection of any solar water heater not exceeding 6sqm in area on any roof or 12sqm when erected other than on any roof; and 

     (g) the erection of any other building where the nature of the erection is such that in the opinion of the building control officer it is not necessary for the applicant to submit, with his application, plans prepared in full conformity with these regulations;

"natural ventilation"  means the movement of air through a building due to natural causes;

"non-combustible"  means classified as non-combustible when tested in accordance with code of practice SANS 10177-5;

"occupancy"  means the particular use or the type of use to which a building or portion thereof is normally put or intended to be put;

"persons with disabilities"  means those persons who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers might hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others;

"population"  means the population determined in accordance with regulation A21;

"prescriptive regulation"  means a regulation which describes in some detail an operation to be performed, or the dimensions of a building, building element or building component and the materials and method of construction to be used in such building, building element or building component;

"public place"  means any square, park, recreation ground or open space which - 

     (a) is vested in the local authority; or 

     (b) the public has the right to use; or 

     (c) is shown on a general plan of a township filed in a deeds registry or a Surveyor-General's office and has been provided for or reserved for the use of the public or the owners of erven in such township;

"rational assessment"  means assessment by a competent person of the adequacy of the performance of a solution in relation to requirements including, as necessary, a process of reasoning, calculation and consideration of accepted analytical principles, based on a combination of deductions from available information, research and data, appropriate testing and service experience;

"rational design"  means any design by a competent person involving a process of reasoning and calculation and which may include a design based on a standard or other suitable document;

"rodding eye"  means an access opening in a drainage installation provided for the purposes of gaining full-bore access to the interior of a drain for internal cleaning, and which remains permanently accessible after completion of the installation, but does not include an inspection chamber or manhole;

"sanitary fixture"  means a receptacle to which water is permanently supplied, and from which waste water or soil water is discharged;

"sewage"  means waste water, soil water, industrial effluent and other liquid waste, either separately or in combination, but does not include stormwater;

"sewer"  means a pipe or conduit which is the property of or is vested in the local authority and which is used or intended to be used for the conveyance of sewage;

"site"  means any erf, lot, plot, stand or other piece of land on which a building has been, is being or is to be erected;

"soil fixture"  means a sanitary fixture which receives and discharges soil water;

"soil pipe"  means a discharge pipe which conveys soil water;

"soil water"  means liquid containing excreta;

"sprinkler system"  means an approved system of piping and sprinkler heads connected to a water supply which when actuated by the effect of fire automatically releases water;

"stairway"  means any part of a building which provides a route of travel between different levels in such building and is formed by a single flight or by a combination of two or more flights and one or more intervening landings;

"storage tank"  means any tank, other than any tank used for storage of hot water or any cistern serving a toilet pan or a urinal, which forms part of a water installation and is used for the storage of water;

"storey"  means that part of a building which is situated between the top of any floor and the top of the floor next above it, or if there is no floor above it that portion between such floor and the ceiling above it (any open work floor, catwalk or gallery being taken to be part of the storey in which it is situated), and in relation to a building - 

    (a) the ground storey shall be taken as the storey in which there is situated an entrance to the building from the level of the adjoining ground or, if there is more than one such storey the lower or lowest of these;

     (b) a basement shall be taken to be any part of the building which is below the level of the ground storey; 

     (c) an upper storey shall be taken to be any storey of the building which is above the level of the ground storey; and 

     (d) the height expressed in storeys shall be taken to be that number of storeys which includes all storeys other than a basement;

"stormwater"  means water resulting from natural precipitation or accumulation and includes rainwater, surface water, subsoil water or spring water;

"stormwater drain"  means a pipe, conduit or surface channel situated on a site, which is used to convey stormwater to a suitable point of discharge;

"stormwater sewer"  means a pipe, conduit or channel, owned by or vested in the local authority, which is used for the conveyance of stormwater;

"street"  means any street, road, thoroughfare, lane, footpath, sidewalk, subway or bridge which - 

     (a) is vested in the local authority; or 

     (b) the public has the right to use; or 

     (c) is shown on a general plan of a township filed in a deeds registry or a Surveyor-General's office and has been provided or reserved for use by the public or the owners of erven in such township;

"structural"  means relating to or forming part of any structural system;

"structural system"  in relation to a building, means the system of constructional elements and components of any building which is provided to resist the loads acting upon it and to transfer such loads to the ground upon which the foundation of the building rests;

"structural wall"  means a wall forming part of any structural system;

"suitable"  means capable of fulfilling or having fulfilled the intended function or fit for its intended purpose;

"temporary building"  means any building that is so declared by the owner and that is being used or is to be used for a specified purpose for a specified limited period of time, but does not include a builder's shed;

"the Act"  means the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act, 1977 (Act No.103 of 1977);

"trained plumber"  means any person who in the trade of plumbing has, in terms of the Manpower Training Act, 1981 (Act No. 56 of 1981), passed a qualifying trade test or has been issued with a certificate of proficiency or has obtained a National Certificate in Construction Plumbing, National Qualification Framework level 3;

"trap"  means a pipe fitting or a part of a sanitary fixture which is designed to retain a water seal;

"ventilating pipe"  means a pipe which leads to the open air at its highest point and which provides ventilation throughout a drainage installation for the purpose of preventing the destruction of water seals, but does not include a discharge pipe;

"waste pipe"  means a discharge pipe which conveys waste water only;

"waste water"  means used water not contaminated by soil water or industrial effluent and shall not include stormwater;

"water fitting"  means any component, other than a pipe, of any water installation, through which water passes or in which it is stored;

"water installation"  means an installation used or intended to be used for the conveyance or storage of water in any building or on any site on which such building is situated and includes any pipe or any water fitting other than any water meter vested in the local authority;

"water seal"  means the water in a trap which acts as a barrier against the flow of any foul air or gas;

"water supply system"  means any system of structures, aqueducts, pipes, valves, pumps, meters or other appurtenances relating thereto which are vested in the local authority and are used or intended to be used by it in connection with the supply of water;

"wind load"  means the force exerted by the action of wind;

AZ3. Standards

Where in these regulations reference is made to a SANS number, such reference shall relate to the latest edition of the national standard having the number and title given in the following table:

SANS No.Title
1125Room air conditioners
10005Preservative treatment of timber
10082Timber buildings
10105The classification, use, and maintenance of portable fire extinguishers
10124Application of certain soil insecticides for the protection of buildings
10177Fire testing of materials, components, and elements used in buildings
     Part 1
     Part 2
     Part 3
     Part 4
10400The application of the National Building Regulations

AZ4. Satisfying the requirements of the National Building Regulations

1. The requirements of the National Building Regulations shall be complied with by:

    (a) adhering to the requirements of all the prescriptive regulations; and

    (b) satisfying all functional regulations by:

        (i) adopting building solutions that comply with the requirements of the relevant part of SANS 10400; or

        (ii) reliably demonstrating, or predicting with certainty, to the satisfaction of the appropriate local authority, that an adopted building solution has an equivalent or superior performance to a solution that complies with the requirements of the relevant part of SANS 10400.

2. A competent person who is registered in an appropriate category of registration in terms of the Architectural Professions Act, 2000 (Act No. 44 of 2000), the Engineering Profession Act, 2000 (Act No. 46 of 2000), the Natural Scientific Professions Act, 2003 (Act No. 27 of 2003) or any other relevant Act and, in accordance with the requirements of regulation A19, shall prepare and submit to the local authority a rational design or rational assessment where compliance with the requirements of subregulation (1) is to be satisfied in terms of subregulation (1)(b)(ii).

3. An approved competent persons who satisfies the requirements of subregulation (1) in terms of subregulation (1)(b)(ii) in respect of a system, measure, facility, parameter or installations shall inspect and certify upon completion, in accordance with the requirements of regulation A19, the construction, erection or installation thereof.

FOOTNOTE - 1

AZ5. Repeal of Regulations

The National Building Regulations published under Government Notice no. R 1081 of 10 June 1988 as amended by Government Notice no. R 1726 of 26 August 1988 is repealed from the date of the coming into operation of these regulations.

COMMENTARY:

Regulation AZ4(1)(b)(ii) of the National Building Regulations provides for functional regulations to be satisfied by a competent person reliably demonstrating, or predicting with certainty, to the satisfaction of the appropriate local authority, that an adopted building solution has an equivalent or superior performance to a solution that complies with the requirements of the relevant part of SANS 10400.

The measure for satisfying regulation AZ4(1)(b)(ii) should be read to mean that the performance levels of solutions must be compared in determining whether the relevant regulation of the National Building Regulations has been satisfied.

The performance level of a performance based (rationalised) solution cannot be directly compared or measured against the tabulated or defined deemed-to-satisfy requirements of a standard to determine whether compliance has been achieved. This is similar to attempting to compare apples with oranges. The result is a skewed outcome.

To compare a performance based (rationalised) solution against a deemed-to-satisfy requirement contained in SANS 10400 requires that the performance level of both the performance based (rationalised) solution and deemed-to-satisfy solution is known. This requires that the performance level of a deemed-to-satisfy solution must be determined through a process of testing, modelling, etc., similar to the manner in which the performance based (rationalised) solution is developed.

Once the performance level of the deemed-to-satisfy solution has been determined the performance outputs of the deemed-to-satisfy solution and performance based (rationalised) solution can be compared on a “like for like” basis.

Where the performance level of the performance based (rationalised) solution is compared and found to achieve an equivalent or superior performance to that achieved by the deemed-to-satisfy solution, the performance based (rationalised) solution can be accepted as satisfying the requirement of the functional regulation AZ4(1)(b)(ii) of the National Building Regulations. This, subject to the competent person undertaking the performance based (rationalised) solution satisfying the requirements for appointment in accordance with regulation A19 of the National Building Regulations.

Likewise, where the performance level of the performance based (rationalised) solution does not achieve an equivalent or superior performance to that achieved by the deemed-to-satisfy solution the performance based (rationalised) solution must be amended and re-evaluated until an equivalent or superior performance is achieved.

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