With Australia in the midst of one our worst heatwaves in history and bushfires raging across the country, millions of important records could be lost forever.
The National Archives of Australia recommends CDs and DVDs be stored at temperatures between 4°C and 20°C with a relative humidity of 20 to 50 per cent. Photos, meanwhile, should be stored in the lowest temperatures possible with every degree lower than standard room temperature resulting in a considerable life extension for photographic material.
For thousands of Australians that means valuable work and personal records could be disintegrating every time they turn of the air conditioner this week, not to mention the many more that will be lost to fire.
Grace Records Management is prepared for whatever the climate throws at us. All our sites are purpose-built to house records and digital information and are located away from known hazards. The sites are well ventilated, correctly insulated and employ UV-filtered lighting which means a temperature of between 15-30°C is continually maintained. Similarly, the relative humidity hovers steadily between 40-60 per cent.
When it comes to fire, all our locations incorporate extensive fire protection systems. In the majority of our National sites, VESDA – Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus – constantly takes samples of the air to check for smoke content. All our buildings are equipped with dry-pipe sprinkler systems and sophisticated fire alarms linked to local Fire Brigades. Extinguishers and sprinkler systems are tested weekly and fully maintained in line with international standards.
In addition, our media storage rooms boast a fire rating of four hours.
The heat won’t last forever but if you want your documents and records to, consider storing them with Grace Records Management.