Skip to content

// Health & Safety

Banning combustible cladding won’t solve fire risks alone

By Mark Varley, Head of Health and Safety at FirstPort

The debate over cladding on high-rise residential buildings post-Grenfell continues, and will for some time. But we mustn’t let it overshadow the other side of the debate, which looks beyond the specific materials and encompasses the important recommendations for the future of building safety.

There are an indeterminate number of people who will interact with a building over its lifespan, from developers and their contractors to residents and workpeople. This is why Dame Hackitt wants to see a change in mindset and behaviour from everyone involved. Ultimately, a comprehensive approach to building safety means taking a whole-building approach looking at how we commission, design, and plan new developments.

In addition, it won’t come as a surprise that most fires in shared residential buildings start in individual properties. With this in mind, another key consideration is how to encourage residents to work with property management or to adapt their behaviour, and how to find a balance between the rights and responsibilities of residents and duty-holders alike.

You can read the full article, which was published in Construction News here.