Australia’s Version of White House a Fire Hazard

October 12, 2011

Australia’s prime minister is looking for a new home after her official residence was declared a potential fire hazard with a leaking roof that needs replacing.

Special Minister of State Gary Gray said in a statement Tuesday that Prime Minister Julia Gillard is looking for “suitable, secure accommodation” in the national capital of Canberra while her official home, known as The Lodge, is renovated over 18 months.

The 84-year-old building near Parliament House has hosted world dignitaries including President George W. Bush, who attended a barbecue there during a 2003 Australian visit.

Gray says its original copper electrical wiring is enclosed in cloth insulation, which may become a fire hazard.

He says the slate tiled roof is dangerous and no longer weatherproofs the building.

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