Grenfell two years on: planned regs changes 'not enough'
The government’s proposed changes to Building Regulations in response to Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent review don’t go far enough.
That’s the warning from the Fire Protection Association (FPA), issued two years on from the Grenfell Tower disaster, which took place on 14 June 2017.
The FPA said it wanted to see a series of measures introduced in order to prevent another tragedy.
It called for the ban on combustible cladding to be extended to all high-risk buildings, regardless of height, rather than those over 18m.
It also recommended a ban on single staircases in buildings in excess of 18m — instead offering both an entrance and exit staircase — as well as the mandatory installation of multi-sensor detection for all high-risk occupancies (a fire detector that monitors dangers including smoke, heat and carbon monoxide).
Meanwhile, while it welcomed the government’s acknowledgement of the value of independently verified products, the FPA called for assurance to be mandated and extended to the installers of products and risk assessors.
Jonathan O’Neill, managing director, FPA said: “The Fire Protection Association supports a total ban on combustible building materials, to all high-risk buildings, such as schools, hospitals, nursing homes, blocks of flats – not just those buildings over 18 metres. We also want a ban on single staircases in all tall buildings, because in the event of a fire you need at least one staircase for people to be able to evacuate the building, and a second staircase for the fire and rescue services for entry.
"Our support of third-party certification, to provide independent verification of building regulations services, as well as the mandatory installation of multi sensor detectors (that can detect several sources, such as heat, smoke and carbon monoxide) is also a key consideration. There is clearly much that still needs to be done, so we are keen to see change now - and will help in any way we can to ensure that we never again experience a tragedy on the scale we witnessed at Grenfell.”