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POS issues statement regarding fire safety in tall buildings

Date: 20/6/2017

Following the tragic events at Grenfell Tower, people are looking at the wider issue of fire safety in tall buildings.

It is our Building Control colleagues who have responsibility for fire safety and means of escape in all buildings, as these matters are dealt with under the Building Regulations (Approved Document Part B). Where a matter (such as fire safety or structural integrity) is dealt with through another statutory regime (such as the Building Regulations), the planning system should not duplicate or supplement those controls. That has been the position of successive governments.

However, notwithstanding this, our members have seen planning committee councillors up and down the country asking for assurances that a tall building is safe when it is reported to their planning committee. Already developers are volunteering to provide additional information regarding fire safety to assure planning committee members, even though it is not within the committee's remit. This makes sense to the extent that we do not want a developer coming in with a different cladding material that looks and feels different to the permitted scheme because building control had to veto the original.



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