When the Grenfell Tower fire happened in London in 2017, it made headline news all over the country. The fire launched an enquiry into the law regarding fire safety in buildings. In 2022, a new set of regulations were announced. These regulations will be known as The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 and will implement many of the recommendations that were made in the Phase 1 report of the Grenfell Tower inquiry. The new regulations will come into effect 23rd January 2023.
In the case of high-rise residential buildings, which can be classed as a multi-occupied residential building that is at least 18 metres high or 7 plus storeys, the responsible person has to:
- Electronically share information about the building’s external wall system to their local fire and rescue service (FRS) and they must also supply electronic copies of the floor plans and building plans.
- Hard copies of the building’s floor plans must be kept, as well as an orientation plan of the building on a single page. The name and UK contact details of the person responsible must be kept in a secure information box, which can be accessed by firefighters.
- Wayfinding signage must also be installed in all high-rise buildings that is visible even in low-light conditions.
- Monthly (at minimum) checks must be carried out on lifts which are for the use of firefighters in high-rise residential buildings.
All communal fire doors must be checked quarterly in multi-occupied residential buildings that are higher than 11 metres in height. Also, annual checks must be conducted on flat entrance doors.
If these regulations aren’t followed, then there can be some severe consequences. Fines can be given, and even jail time in extreme cases of neglect to abide by the regulations. It’s very easy to think ‘that will never happen to me’ so sometimes regulations aren’t treated with the seriousness they deserve. This is why there are over 22,000 fires in the UK every year. The costs of a fire can be catastrophic.
If you have any questions regarding the new regulations, please get in contact.