Skip to content

Dangerous Structures

Under the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Act 1964, the Council can issue notices to property owners, requiring them to address any dangerous structures on their property, and failure to comply may result in legal action; additionally, the Council has the authority to intervene immediately in cases of emergency and can recover costs from owners for necessary works.

What is a Dangerous Structure/Place?

A dangerous structure is:

  • Any building, wall or other structure of any kind; or
  • Any part of, or anything attached to a building, wall or other structures of any kind¬†that, in the opinion of the sanitary authority in whose district it is situated, is or is likely to be dangerous to any person or property.

Regulations Regarding Dangerous Structures

The Council can direct that work (including the demolition of the structure and the clearing of the site) be carried out immediately if it considers it necessary. It may also require that all use of the dangerous structure be stopped. In certain cases, the Council can direct the occupier of a dangerous structure to leave and remove all his or her property. This is done in the interests of the occupier’s safety.

The owner is required by law to ensure that their property does not contain any dangerous structures. If it does, he/she must take steps to remedy the situation. Otherwise, he/she is liable for prosecution by the Council.

The Council is empowered to deal with structures or places which are a danger or likely to be a danger to the public.

In cases of emergency the Council is empowered to render such properties unsafe. A notice may be served on the owner requiring works to be carried out to prevent the structure or place from being dangerous. The Council may also carry out such works itself, and recover the costs from the owner.

Comprehensive powers of enforcement can be exercised by the Planning Department with regard to the management of dangerous structures. When the Council becomes aware of any structure (or place) that is or is likely to become dangerous an Inspector from the Planning Section carries out an investigation, the ownership is established and the owner is written to. Appropriate action is then taken to eliminate the danger.

If you wish to report a dangerous structure/place, the relevant complaint form is available here.