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Household and Storey Shelters

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I submit household shelter (HS) or storey shelter (SS) plans for approval?
2. Where can I obtain application forms for formal HS/SS design consultations and submission of HS/SS plans for approval and commissioning?
3. Where can I obtain the design requirements and guidelines on submission procedure relating to the design, construction and commissioning of HS/SS?
4. Besides applying for formal pre-submission consultation, is there another avenue for seeking consultation on HS/SS design?
5. What are the types of developments for which HS/SS need to be provided?
6. What are the types of developments for which HS/SS need not be provided?
7. Are HS/SS required to be provided in A & A works to existing residential houses/buildings ?
8. Are HS/SS required to be provided in reconstruction projects?
9. Who should I consult whether my development works require HS/SS ?
10. When can I expect a reply from BCA after I have made an application?
11. What are the renovation works not allowed for HS/SS?
12. What are the details required to be shown in HS/SS building plans?
13. What are the details required to be shown in HS/SS structural plans?
14. After Notice/s of Approval (NOA) for HS/SS plan is/are obtained, do I need to re-submit amendment plans for approval if there are changes to HS/SS design?
15. Can I submit HS/SS structural plans for approval before the approval of HS/SS building plans?
16. When can I commence the structural works for HS/SS?
17. Is the HS/SS piling plans required to be submitted to Civil Defence Shelter Engineering Department (CDSD) for approval?
18. Who should I submit application for waiver of technical requirements?
19. Do qualified persons (QP) need to arrange for structural inspection of HS/SS walls/slabs before casting?
20. Is a first HS/SS in a residential development project required for commissioning inspection?
21. What are the necessary works required to conduct HS/SS commissioning inspection?
22. Are there any guidelines in selecting the number of HS/SS for project commissioning inspection and over-pressure air-tightness test?
23. When should I apply for project commissioning of HS/SS?
24. When can I re-apply for commissioning inspection if the HS/SS fail the project commissioning inspection?

1.
How do I submit household shelter (HS) or storey shelter (SS) plans for approval?
 

Formal application for approval of HS/SS plans shall be submitted via CORENET e-Submission System (www.corenet.gov.sg) to BCA. Every submission must be accompanied by the relevant application form.

   
2.
Where can I obtain application forms for formal HS/SS design consultations and submission of HS/SS plans for approval and commissioning?
 

Application forms can be obtained from CORENET e-Submission System website (www.corenet.gov.sg).

   
3.
Where can I obtain the design requirements and guidelines on submission procedure relating to the design, construction and commissioning of HS/SS?
 

You can obtain them free of charge by downloading the technical requirements and guidelines from the following links:

  1. Technical Requirements for Household Shelters (4.7Mb .pdf)
  2. Technical Requirements for Storey Shelters (7.2Mb .pdf)
  3. Technical Requirements for Precast Household Shelters (5.1Mb .pdf)
  4. Technical Requirements issued via Circulars by SCDF
  5. Guidelines for Plan Submission, Construction and Commissioning of Household or Storey Shelters (159Kb .pdf)
   
4.
Besides applying for formal pre-submission consultation, is there another avenue for seeking consultation on HS/SS design?
 

Yes. Qualified Person (QP) responsible for building design can make appointment via BCA e-booking system (https://www.bca.gov.sg/eHSCS/) anywhere at any time for consultation with BCA officers at 7th storey, Tower Block, MND Complex. Using e-booking system, QPs are able to obtain timely consultation services and thus manage their work schedule more efficiently.

   
5.
What are the types of developments for which HS/SS need to be provided?
 

Under the Civil Defence Shelter Act, every new residential house or building must be provided with household shelter and/or storey shelter that are constructed on vacant land or in place of building/houses which have been demolished or would be demolished.

   
6.
What are the types of developments for which HS/SS need not be provided?
 

Non-residential developments need not be provided with HS/SS including:

  • Any hotel registered under the provisions of the Hotel Act;
  • Serviced apartments and staff housing/quarters;
  • Institutions such as welfare homes, homes for the aged, homes for the disabled, halfway house and nursing homes;
  • All temporary buildings referred in the Building Control (Temporary Buildings) Regulations;
  • Hostels or halls of residence in educational institutions;
  • Residential clubs (e.g. NTUC holiday resorts) and boarding/guest house (e.g. YMCA); and
  • Dormitories, campsites and chalets.
   
7.
Are HS/SS required to be provided in A & A works to existing residential houses/buildings ?
 

HS/SS are not required to be provided in existing houses/buildings undergoing addition and alteration (A&A) works.

   
 
8.
Are HS/SS required to be provided in reconstruction projects?
 

HS/SS have to be provided for reconstruction projects that involve construction of new building or house in place of existing building or house which has been demolished or would be demolished.

For proposals with reconstruction of existing building, Qualified Person (QP) is to seek consultation with SCDF and obtain a written confirmation where provision of HS/SS is not required. This written confirmation shall be obtained before submitting plans to BCA for approval.

   
9. Who should I consult whether my development works require HS/SS ?
 

As the provision requirement of HS/SS in the residential developments is governed by Civil Defence Shelter Act 1997 which is administered by the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF), you may consult SCDF at 1800 286 5555.

  
10. When can I expect a reply from BCA after I have made an application?
 

You can expect to obtain reply from BCA within 10 working days.

   
11.
What are the renovation works not allowed for HS/SS?
 

As HS/SS are made up of strengthened wall, floor, ceiling and HS/SS door, they must not be hacked or drilled indiscriminately. Certain finishes and fixtures are not permitted as they may become hazards to shelter occupants during a war emergency. Lighting, power socket outlets, telephone point and radio/TV outlet points are also not allowed to be removed as they are essential for occupants to remain inside and communicate with external parties.

The list of permitted and not permitted work can be downloaded here:

   
12.
What are the details required to be shown in HS/SS building plans?
 

The required details are given in the e-application form for the approval of HS/SS plans. You may view the form by clicking this link: BCA-CD-PLAN02.

   
13. What are the details required to be shown in HS/SS structural plans?
 

The HS/SS structural plans submitted must be completed with the required details:

  • floor plans indicating the shelter location;
  • vertical & horizontal sections through the shelter tower (including non-shelter) showing the reinforcement details;
  • cross sectional details of openings such as the blast door opening, ventilation sleeve opening and blast hatch opening (applicable for SS);
  • footing or pilecap plans (if footing is integrated with HS / SS slab);
  • details of transfer beam or slab (if applicable); and
  • design calculations on unshielded non-shelter wall or transfer structure supporting HS/SS tower (if applicable)
   
14.
After Notice/s of Approval (NOA) for HS/SS plan is/are obtained, do I need to re-submit amendment plans for approval if there are changes to HS/SS design?
 

Amendment plans are to be submitted for approval if the changes involve:

  • shelter building layout design that affects HS/SS setback distances;
  • structural layout of transfer structures (if any) supporting shelter tower;
  • shelter building layout design that affects HS/SS tower;
  • HS/SS clear height that affects the wall thickness;
  • gross floor area of dwelling unit that affects HS/SS area and volume;
  • location of HS/SS door or/and ventilation sleeves.
   
 
15.
Can I submit HS/SS structural plans for approval before the approval of HS/SS building plans?
 

To avoid abortive structural design work, submission of HS/SS structural plans should be submitted after Notice of Approval (NOA) for HS/SS building plans has been obtained.

   
16.
When can I commence the structural works for HS/SS?
 

Structural works for HS/SS can only commence after receipt of “NOA for Shelter Structural Plans” from Civil Defence Shelter Engineering Department (CDSD) of BCA and “Permit to Commence Work” from Building Engineering Group of BCA.

   
17.
Is the HS/SS piling plans required to be submitted to Civil Defence Shelter Engineering Department (CDSD) for approval?
 

HS/SS piling plans are not required to be submitted to CDSD for approval.

   
18. Who should I submit application for waiver of technical requirements?
 

Application for waiver of technical requirements is to be submitted to SCDF via CORENET e-Submission System (www.corenet.gov.sg). Application form for waiver of technical requirements can be downloaded from www.corenet.gov.sg.

   
19.
Do qualified persons (QP) need to arrange for structural inspection of HS/SS walls/slabs before casting?
 

It is not necessary to arrange a structural inspection with BCA before concreting of HS/SS wall/slab. It is the responsibility of the qualified person (QP) to ensure that HS/SS are constructed in accordance with the approved plans.

However, to facilitate BCA in carrying out random site inspection, qualified persons (QP) are advised to submit HS/SS work schedule, after obtaining approval of shelter structural plans, to Civil Defence Shelter Engineering Department (CDSD) of BCA.

   
20.
Is a first HS/SS in a residential development project required for commissioning inspection?
 

Application for commissioning of the first HS/SS is not mandatory. However, qualified persons can apply for commissioning inspection of first HS/SS to be commissioned first if they are unfamiliar with HS/SS construction and commissioning. This first commissioned HS/SS shall serve as the reference for other HS/SS in the same project development.

21.
What are the necessary works required to conduct HS/SS commissioning inspection?
 

The qualified person is to ensure readiness of HS/SS for commissioning inspection by completing and submitting the checklist before applying for commissioning inspection to Civil Defence Shelter Engineering Department (CDSD) of BCA.

Besides this, the approved HS/SS building and structural plans shall be provided at the time of HS/SS commissioning inspection.

22.
Are there any guidelines in selecting the number of HS/SS for project commissioning inspection and over-pressure air-tightness test?
 

Yes. The sample size for household shelter and storey shelter project commissioning inspection is given in the “Guidelines for Plan Submission, Construction and Commissioning of Household or Storey Shelters” as follows:

Table 1 – Household Shelter sample size

Number of HS in each Project (or Block-basis) request of commissioning inspections Number of HS samples Selected for Project HS Commissioning
1-5 1
6-20 2
21-100 5
> 100 5% of total units to be commissioned

Table 2 – Storey Shelter sample size

Number of SS compartments in each Project (or Block-basis) request of commissioning inspections Number of SS compartment samples Selected for Project SS Commissioning
1-5 1
6-10 2
11-30 3
31-50 4
> 50 8% of SS compartments to be commissioned
23.
When should I apply for project commissioning of HS/SS?
 

Qualified persons shall apply for project commissioning of HS/SS at least five working days before the proposed date of HS/SS commissioning. Application shall be accompanied with a completed checklist endorsed by the QP.

24.
When can I re-apply for commissioning inspection if the HS/SS fail the project commissioning inspection?
 

The re-application for commissioning inspection should be made by the qualified person via Correspondence to Agency e-form (click this link: ESS-CORR) at least 14 working days before the proposed date of HS/SS commissioning.

The Notice of Approval for Commissioning of Project HS/SS will be issued when all the HS/SS samples for the entire project (or block-basis) passed the commissioning inspection.