34 Union Street Brunswick
A remarkable location - close to everything


What emergencies have we had at 34 Union Street over our 10 years of life?

I can only recall a few false fire alarms and one other - the time the toilets wouldn't flush. What! most of you are probably thinking, and yes it really happened.

As part of our "greenness" our toilets use recovered rainwater stored in a large tank under the car park for flushing. If the tank is empty a system automatically switches to the mains supply and we never notice. One day that switch failed.

Take note: There is an immediate solution use your mains supply and a bucket and eventually it will all come back to normal - provided someone called MIA. There is - and it happened - the possibility of the flushing mechanism hooking up through too many violent pushes on the button.

We all survived, but think of all the other emergencies, are they covered? None of the events listed below are ridiculous, and many have actually happened. Can you look, think and suggest possible and better solutions.

When a truly comprehensive list is developed how should it be disseminated? Is there, or should there be a universal hot number to call? Please think about these issues and contact Tony Blackmore either on 0488685466 or ablackmore@iinet.net.au

Event First action Secondary Considerations
Fire (a) Alarm sounds and brigade attends.

(b) No alarm, but a resident has used one of the hoses located around the building. (Does this trigger the alarm?)

(c) A resident detects smoke but there’s no alarm.
Case a. The occupant of the unit on fire may stay to salvage stuff from a small fire extinguished by the sprinkler. Assume apartment now uninhabitable. Where do we advise the owner to go for help?

Case b. what should the resident do now?
Is there smoke detection in the car park?
Do we need a manually opening exit near the back of the car park?

Case a. Advise departure regardless because of electricity risk.

Nearest shelter in case of heavy rain. (Shop verandas at 3-5 Union St, Jewel station buildings)
Fire Shops at front on fire and lobby filled with smoke and flames from Shop 2 Both exits are now unavailable. There must be emergency exits through the car park to RMIT and through the west side fence to the neighbour’s premises.
Front entrance tag sensor fails There are no contact or other action details at the tag reader. 24/7 service must have an easily changeable entry code. Assume this entry code won’t work. What now? Is there a fail-safe action that leaves the door open? Considerations
Inner door fails to open when leaving the lobby Press button on the left of the door. What if door still fails? Considerations
Garage door fails when trying to enter Check whether your actuator light blinks. You may have a flat battery. Park car away from entrance and use pedestrian entrance. A resident will be able to enter through front door and be able to check advice at the garage door’s interior switch. The phone number there is 93436888 Maria’s non-mobile number. If door maintenance service not available, provide access to key safe with key allowing manual opening. Close door after entry? Park car outside.
Garage door fails when trying to exit Check whether actuator light blinks. You may have a flat battery. Check advice at the door interior. The phone number there is 9343 6888, Maria’s non-mobile number. See above Could be serious. Catching the car ferry to Tasmania for example.
Toilets won’t refill after flushing. Has actually happened. Probably the recovered water system has failed to switch to the mains supply. Can it be manually switched? Who does it? Does the system have a clearly visible failure indicator? Does a power outage affect toilet flushing when using recovered water? Presumably there is a pump for recovered water. Is there an automatic switch to mains with power failure? Add to a list of emergency actions displayed in each unit.
Lift fails with people trapped Use the in-lift phone to call Forte. People tend to get impatient and on at least 3 occasions I have responded to people banging on the lift doors. On one occasion there were about 8 or more trapped in the front lift. There was a language problem and they were panicking. Check that in-lift phone has been used. Ensure that Forte has been contacted and is on the way.
A person/s injured and requiring aid Call 000. Could there be a capable building responder equipped with defibrillator, first aid equipment etc.? Is there a possible building liability? For example a fall down wet stairs. Evidence collecting and witness identification required. Check Surf Lifesaver Course.
Fracture to a sewage pipe in the car park Could this require a building evacuation? Call MIA Could be very serious Requires 24/7 service
Building power out but not the neighbouring properties Probably call 93436888? Just as well I have a mobile because the VOIP phones don’t work with no power. Is 93436888 a 24/7 number? Is CitiLink the right one to call? It could be a fault in the sub-station. Call Sam
Major flooding in the car park. Type A, caused by rain. Type B, caused by pipe or drain failure. Call MIA Secondary Magnitude may require 24/7 service
Intruder on the premises FCall 000 for police emergency. And advise to seek personal security. Secondary Considerations
Discovery of vomiting or other offensive deposits in the lift or lobby First action depends on he finder and the availability of equipment or materials. This has happened in this building when a resident found someone had vomited in the lift. That resident cleaned it up, but I think that would be unusual. Secondary It’s a problem that needs to be fixed very quickly and IMHO can’t wait for a distant person to arrive. Possibly sawdust with a suitable deodoriser can be made available and suitably signed as an immediate first step.

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