Rules and regulations
Perth, 12th March 2014
More than any country, Australia seems quite strict with its rules and regulations. In order to execute work at nearly every level of construction and installation you have to make sure you comply with the local rules and regulations. You would say, well, isn’t that everywhere like that? My feeling is no and that is just from personal experience and working both in Asia as well as in Australia. It is only here in Australia that I am being confronted time and again with having to conform to rules and regulations or having to open the proposals to the scrutiny of the local community to allow public feedback or to submit for instance to the heritage council for approval. I am working on several projects here that are full of this. When preparing the budget estimates for one of my projects in the city centre I have to allow for the application of building permits and possible traffic management. But even the potential need to work overtime (not really overtime, but time outside normal working hours such as at nights or in the weekends) something that certainly happens frequently with lighting projects, may need at time the approval of workers unions. You need to assure that you have the necessary valid public liability and professional indemnity insurances to cover for any eventualities. Rules and regulations, it definitely feels this is far more stringent here than anywhere else in Asia. In fact I hardly ever get hung up with these kind of issues in Asia. The only thing at times that are being required is a professional indemnity insurance, but even that happens only occasionally. Not that we don’t have one, on the contrary, it is something that we feel we absolutely need to have if only for the protection of ourselves and for the peace of mind of our clients. It is listed as part of our terms and conditions in our contract proposals.
It is just interesting to see how much time is spent here in Australia dealing with this kind of “rules and regulation compliance” compared to Asia where it hardly ever figures on any project agenda when it comes to lighting design. This could be because the profession of lighting design in Australia is perhaps more mature and that as such any professional company needs to comply to the rules and regulations for companies involved in the design, supply and installation/ construction. In Asia lighting design is perhaps less accepted as a profession and hence less required to comply with anything. That part is covered by the more established professions like architects and electrical consultants.
Light Watch 5-41: How things change over the years…here is a look back into some advertising lighting history…