19 Aug 2016

Govt calls for steel mesh code submissions

1:32 pm on 19 August 2016

Steel reinforcing mesh testing is to be toughened up to ensure both quality and quantity, the government says.

A file photo shows a construction worker selecting steel mesh for concrete reinforcement

A file photo shows a construction worker selecting steel mesh for concrete reinforcement Photo: Cultura Creative

The government is calling for submissions on proposed changes to the Building Code to strengthen the mesh.

Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith said the government was tightening the requirements for ensuring steel mesh used in New Zealand was up to standard.

He said it was increasing the number of tests required, clarifying exactly how the tests were done, and requiring them to be done by internationally accredited testing laboratories.

"There have been issues with the quality of a small amount of steel mesh, which the Commerce Commission is investigating," he said.

"The updated Verification Standard and Acceptable Solution will apply to all steel mesh of Grade 500E being sold in New Zealand, whether made locally or imported.

"This will make it absolutely clear to the industry exactly what should be tested and the standard to which that must be done and will help ensure the product meets our 10 percent ductility requirements for residential buildings giving certainty to the public that the mesh used in new houses is fit-for-purpose."

Submissions on the proposed changes can be made before 8 September, with the changes set to come into effect on 7 October.

Meanwhile, the company which is understood to have laid a steel dumping complaint against China has asked for a strong stance from the government on a "massive over-supply of steel".

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