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Independent review to examine Building Regulations and fire safety

There will be an independent review of Building Regulations and fire safety, the government has said.

This follows the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower, which raised serious questions about the fire safety of high-rise residential buildings, and subsequent government testing of aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding from similar buildings across the country.

The review, to be led by Dame Judith Hackitt, Chair of EEF, the Manufacturers’ Organisation, will look at current Building Regulations and fire safety with a particular focus on high-rise residential buildings. It will report jointly to the Communities Secretary Sajid Javid and the Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

It will examine:
• The regulatory system around the design, construction and on-going management of buildings in relation to fire safety
• Related compliance and enforcement issue
• International regulation and experience in this area.

Communities Secretary Sajid Javid said: “It’s clear we need to urgently look at Building Regulations and fire safety. This independent review will ensure we can swiftly make any necessary improvements. Government is determined to make sure that we learn the lessons from the Grenfell Tower fire, and to ensure nothing like it can happen again.”

As part of the review, Dame Judith will consult the Buildings Regulations Advisory Committee, which advises the government on changes to Building Regulations, as well as the construction and housing industry, the fire sector, international experts, MPs and the public.

Dame Judith said: “This review will look at Building Regulations and fire safety to see what changes can be made for the future to make these more effective.

“I am keen to engage widely with industry and the public to inform the recommendations from the review. I want the recommendations to lead to any necessary improvements in the system being made.”

Terms of reference for the independent review will be published this summer once the terms of reference for the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry have been agreed. The review expects to present an interim report before the end of the year, and a final report no later than spring 2018.

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