Building Regulations and Fire Safety

Fire safety measures need to be implemented at the very beginning of the building process; the design. Once a building has been built and a workforce has been moved in, it is all very well to put in place fire safety regulations and procedures but if the initial groundwork has not been done, these can render rather pointless.

The Building Act 1984 and Building Regulations 2000 relate to fire safety for the construction of new buildings as well as additional work on existing buildings in England and Wales. This applies to erection, extension or material alteration, along with material change of use. The fire and rescue service will need to be consulted with to ensure that proper fire safety measures are being put in place.

All building work needs to be approved by the local building control authority, or other such building approval body, before work commences. All new and existing buildings must have an escape route in case a fire breaks out. There must also be some sort of smoke control or pressurisation system which will prevent smoke from spreading to certain areas of the building. Fire resistance elements must be incorporated into the structure of the building and also a focus on space separation to prevent fire spreading to nearby buildings. The building must have sufficient stability and there needs to be easy access to fire equipment and contact to the fire service.

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