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726 Combustible insulation in rainscreen cladding

Report ID: 726

Published: Newsletter No 50 - April 2018

Report Overview

Whilst walking past a tall residential building being constructed in the UK, a reporter observed the facade build-up to consist of combustible insulation with a rainscreen cladding.

Report Content

A tall residential building is being constructed in a UK city. Whilst walking past, a reporter observed the facade build-up to consist of combustible insulation with a rainscreen cladding. They have no professional involvement in the project and are unaware of its fire strategy; whether the facade build-up is an approved, tested system; or if a desk study was conducted for the project. However, in light of recent events, particularly for projects with a high number of sleeping residents, the use of combustible insulation causes the reporter great concern.

Comments

The reporter is right to be concerned after the large number of reported problems. It is only to be hoped that with all the publicity post-Grenfell that no current design or construction team can be unaware of the risk. However, prudence is required, and the general advice is as follows:

For a building under construction:

If you are concerned about work being carried out, in the first instance you may wish to notify the principal contractor responsible for the work. You can also contact the relevant local authority, who will have an interest in the safety of buildings in their area.

You might also contact HSE who is the enforcing authority in respect of fire safety during construction activities. However, concerns about the design of the building, materials used and adherence to Building Regulations are best referred to the Local Authority Building Control department. For an occupied residential building under refurbishment, the Fire and Rescue service are the authority responsible for general fire precautions in the building, such as means of escape, alarms and fire-fighting equipment.

For an existing building:

If you are concerned about the safety of an existing building, you may wish to notify the building owner. You can also contact the relevant local authority, who will have an interest in the safety of buildings in their area.

For an occupied residential building under refurbishment, the Fire and Rescue service are the authority responsible for general fire precautions in the building, such as means of escape, alarms and fire-fighting equipment.

 

If you are aware of a similar safety concern or event, please Submit a CROSS Report

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View other CROSS reports published in Newsletter No. 50


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