If you’re responsible for a housing development, taking fire safety seriously is vital for the safety of your residents and to ensure compliance with statutory requirements. In addition to ensuring safety, working with expert fire safety consultants can save you and your firm a lot of money in the long run. It can be difficult to navigate all the options available and determine what the law requires of you.
The Government has many regulations in place that are specifically related to fire safety. Following these correctly is of paramount importance when protecting future tenants and neighbouring properties from fire risks.
From the initial construction blueprints to the final fittings and fixtures, there are things property developers must keep in mind.
It is essential to assess the internal and external structure of a property, in order to gauge its ability to resist and control the rapid spread of smoke and fire.
Fires do not usually start in two different places within a property, so if a fire can be contained to its starting point its spread can be controlled.
Certain materials for lining partitions, walls, ceilings and other internal parts of a property’s structure can significantly affect the spread and growth of a fire. Choosing unsuitable materials can prevent occupants from escaping from the property in the case of a fire. Property developers must use materials that are proven to resist the spread of flame over their surfaces and have a rate of heat release or rate of fire growth that is sufficiently low.
As well as safeguarding the inside of your property, the outside structure must also be protected. The method of compartmentation or isolation is designed to divide the property into separate cells using suitable materials that help to prevent the passage of fire through walls and thus between sections of the building. This makes sure that the property’s structure is not at increased risk of collapse during a fire and that any neighbouring buildings, apartments or shops are not at a high risk of being affected by the fire. This is most easily achieved through fire doors and walls.
In addition to the design of the building, it’s important to consider alarms and fixtures. This means having a smoke alarm on every storey as well as a carbon monoxide monitor in every room that has a fuel-burning appliance.
As a property developer, you have a range of requirements to meet to ensure your building is safe. Vemco Consulting can provide you with fire safety consultancy services to ensure you’re meeting these requirements and making the right choices every step of the way. There’s no development too big or too small and we’re passionate about helping you with your fire strategy.