Timbercrete fire safe houses and bunkers
In response to the recent devastating bushfires in Victoria, as well as possible
future fires in other areas, Timbercrete has now launched a fire bunker or safety house constructed
from arguably Australia's most fire resistant building product - "Timbercrete."
The Timbercrete team is committed to finding a practical solution to protect Australia's most precious
and valuable assets - it's people.
To this end we are pleased to announce a tangible and affordable solution to help protect and safeguard
human life against possible future fire devastation.
Timbercrete is a remarkable, award-winning and environmentally friendly building product. Timbercrete
was invented in Australia, is Australian owned and manufactured. Patent protection has been granted in
most of the world's population while in other countries the patent is still pending.
This award-winning building product boasts the highest possible fire rating, achieving an outstanding
Fire Resistant Level (FRL) of 240/240/240 during tests conducted on a single skin wall (190mm to 200mm
thick). CSIRO Fire tests on Timbercrete were conducted in accordance with Australian standard 1530 and
part 4-1997. Test reference number FSV 1094. (For a full test report including photos refer to the website
The test was carried out to determine Structural Adequacy, Integrity and Insulation.
Structural Adequacy and Integrity
Most walls fail in these categories because they buckle severely flexing out as far as 150mm before suddenly
failing. A careful study of the deflection graph shows that the 3m high Timbercrete wall only deflected
4mm towards the furnace in the first 30 minutes. Then the wall corrected itself so that at the end of 240
minutes it had only moved 1mm from its original position. This ability to remain straight assists in its
With regard to the amazing insulating properties of Timbercrete, the ambient temperature at the beginning
of the fire test was 30°. The average temperature of the wall being exposed to the flames (furnace
temperature) was close to 1200°C. However the other side of the Timbercrete wall that was not exposed to
direct flame eventually reached only 75° after 4 hours! (Remember a bushfire front may pass in less than 30
mins). This means the rise in temperature of the Timbercrete wall was only 45°C above the ambient air
temperature even after 4 hours! With this level of outstanding performance, it stands to reason that Timbercrete
is ideally suited for a fire resistant bunker.
Fire Resistant Bunker and Safe House Basic Specification and Features
- The bunker measures 3.6m long by 3.2m wide.
- Insulated metal fire resistant door - RFL -/240/30.
- Fire resistant glass window. Triple glazed with the outside pane being heat proof ceramic glass, middle pane
heat proof toughened glass and the inside pane is also heat proof toughened glass. Each pane is 5mm thick with
a 50mm cavity between each layer to maximise insulation value.
- Fire resistant Timbercrete is also used on the roof. This is a similar thickness of product that has been
tested as a wall, (190 mm thick). This added thickness is to maximise the overall fireproof nature of the
- A Fire resistant spy hole is located near the door so that occupants can make a safe exit. The spy hole measures
210mm wide 180mm high and is constructed of triple pane fire rated glass as per the window.
- Each bunker is equipped with an air tank (similar to what fire-fighters use) that can be turned on as the fire
storm approaches. This will slightly pressurise the bunker forcing excess cooler air out around the small gaps
surrounding the fire resistant door. Pressurising the inside of the bunker prevents smoke or harmful gases
entering the fire safe bunker. The tank will be sufficient to provide fresh air for all the occupants during
the danger period of the fire storm.
The bunker should be installed close to every house that is being rebuilt. These bunkers may also be used in other
applications as a multipurpose facility. When we speak of a "safe house," because of the design of the structure,
it will not only be safe against fire but against theft. This makes it the ideal wine cellar, garden tool shed etc.
It could even be used as a horse stable or a safe house for other loved animals.
While Timbercrete's main focus is to provide a product that will safeguard human life, we believe it is worth
considering our product as people plan to build or rebuild their homes in fire prone areas.
The bunker will be sold in kit form. Visit the Timbercrete website under the section called "contact us" to find
your closest licensed Timbercrete manufacturer.