November 10, 2022

The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022, do you need to be ready?

It’s just a few months until the new legislation around fire door inspections comes into effect.
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The Fire Safety Act 2021 (the Act) received Royal Assent on 29 April 2021 and commenced on 16 May 2022.

The Act amends the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (the Fire Safety Order).

We are pleased to welcome the commencement of the Fire Safety Act in England and Wales, and the Regulations in England, as important steps forward in strengthening the Fire Safety Order and improving fire safety.

The Act clarifies that responsible persons (RPs) for multi-occupied residential buildings must manage and reduce the risk of fire for the structure and external walls of the building, including cladding, balconies and windows, and entrance doors to individual flats that open into common parts.

Fire door signage
Fire door signage

What changes?

The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 (the Regulations) have been introduced as an important step towards implementing the recommendations of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 report. The Regulations are being introduced under Article 24 of the Fire Safety Order and will come into force on 23 January 2023.

Additional responsibilities?

These Regulations will apply in England and require that the Responsible Person of a multi-occupied residential building take specific action depending on the height of the building.

For multi-occupied residential buildings (at least 18 metres in height or 7 or more storeys), the Responsible Person will need to:

  • Building Plans: provide the fire and rescue services with electronic copies of building floor plans and keep hard copies of those plans in a secure information box accessible by firefighters.
  • External wall Systems: provide the fire and rescue services with information about the building’s external wall system and provide updates if there are material changes to these walls.
  • Lifts and Fire-Fighting equipment: undertake monthly checks on fire and evacuation lifts and other firefighting equipment and inform the fire and safety services if a lift used by firefighters or firefighting equipment is out of order for longer than 24 hours.
  • Information Boxes: install and maintain a secure information box containing the name and UK contact details of the responsible person and hard copies of building floor plans.
  • Way finding Signage: install way finding signage which is visible in low light conditions showing flat and floor numbers in the stairwells.

For multi-occupied residential buildings over 11 metres in height, Responsible Persons will need to:

  • Fire Doors: undertake quarterly checks on all communal fire doors, and make annual checks on flat entrance doors.

In all multi-occupied residential buildings with communal areas, Responsible Persons will need to:

  • Safety Instructions. Provide residents with relevant fire safety instructions and information about the importance of fire doors.

What else you need to know

“Domestic premises” isn’t defined, but as the regulations are made under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, we have to assume that in addition to buildings containing self-contained flats, these rules will also apply to rooms let on individual tenancies in a shared house.

If a building comprises two maisonettes with front doors on the street and no communal area, these regulations will not apply.

How can Summit Environmental help?

Summit Environmental - Fire Risk Assessment and Fire Door Inspections
Summit Environmental – Fire Risk Assessment and Fire Door Inspections

Are you ready? Do you need help with?

  • Undertaking quarterly checks of all fire doors (including self-closing devices) in the common parts?
  • Undertaking annual checks of all flat entrance doors (including self-closing devices) that lead onto a building’s common parts?
  • Fire Door Inspections?
  • Fire Risk Assessments?
  • Compliance checks?
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