The government recently completed its review of the Building Regulations and The Building Safety Bill is now in the process of being passed into law. This may mean legal fallout for fire safety in residential buildings across the UK.
Now is the time to encourage building owners to prepare for the Fire Safety Act 2021 which will make significant changes to fire safety regulation –which marks a new era for building safety.
Given Royal Assent on 29th April this year, the Act will amend the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and aims to make it clearer where responsibility for fire safety lies. The new laws apply to buildings containing more than one home that are more than 18 metres or six/seven stories in height and seeks to respond to the outcomes of the Hackitt Review.
The Act may come in late 2021 or early in 2022. Multi-occupied, residential buildings must “manage and reduce the risk of fire” posed by the building’s structure, and most notably external wall systems, including windows and balconies, and individual occupants’ entrance doors. Under the clarification, fire and rescue services will be authorised to take enforcement action and hold building owners to account if they are not compliant.
The Fire Safety Act potentially poses new challenges with the inclusion of the building structure, external walls, balconies and windows now forming part of a fire risk assessment process. At the same time, The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 also represents a legal obligation by employers to ensure fire safety.
If you work in the fire safety trade, what can you do to build trust with customers at this time?
Shout about certification
Complying to “The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005” in regards to ensuring that their fire extinguishers have recently been serviced. is now critical. Many sites will have been closed for a considerable period of time now and the 12 months that a service certificate is valid for will have expired. As you may know, third party certification is a key topic in the fire sector. It offers independent verification and evidence that a company is competent and working to the appropriate standards and best practice for fire safety.
It is key you shout about your certifications so customers know that legal obligations are being met. Press home the risks
Compliance to the RRO(FS)2005 is a legal obligation by employers. Failure to ensure that the necessary precautions and measures are in place will lead to at best-case scenario; the employer will be issued with a non-compliance warning and will have a period of time to make the required changes, a worst case scenario will lead to a hefty fine and possibly lead to the business owner spending time in prison.
Hopefully, most offices will be aware of this, albeit reluctant to allocate precious funding to ensure compliance.
Now is the time to ensure that you are showcasing the full certification of all your products and their reliability and range.
We believe it is critical that trade partners show 100% due diligence in ensuring that the products and services they provide are compliant. This will not only ensure compliance for them, but their customers also. Now is the ideal time to start asking and filing up to date certifications from providers.
Do you need more products to meet the new markets you are serving?
As a Ceasefire partner, you will have the confidence that all our products meet the highest possible global certification standards.
Ceasefire are here to help you help your customers stay safe, protected and in line with their legal obligations.