Understanding the new Building Safety Act is crucial, highlights safety coatings expert

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In a recent advisory, Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine Coatings has emphasised the significance of comprehending the obligations under the Building Safety Act 2022, especially for professionals involved in structural steel protection.

The act is poised to become enforceable soon, marking a paradigm shift in building safety regulations.

Building Safety Act: What you need to know

Come October 2023, the legislation mandates all buildings to be registered with the Building Safety Regulator (BSR).

Moreover, structures that are either 18 metres tall, have seven or more storeys, or house at least two residential units are classified as ‘high risk buildings.’

Ownership or responsibility for a building necessitates registration under the designated title of the Principal Accountable Person.

This title encompasses various roles including contractors, building managers, building owners, and housing associations.

Building Safety Act and compliance measures

It is imperative for the Principal Accountable Person to affirm that the building adhered to pertinent building regulations during its inception.

Furthermore, they must furnish proof of abiding by the new building control route during the design, construction, and refurbishment phases of the building.

Any lapse in registering an occupied high-risk building without justifiable cause might result in stringent penalties – either a hefty fine or imprisonment of up to two years.

Bob Glendenning, Fire Design Engineering Manager for Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine, stated: “This area of knowledge is becoming increasingly important.

“All stakeholders, from building managers to designers, should be attuned to the ramifications of this act and the ensuing challenges.”

He added: “We can guide our clients in assimilating pertinent data about our intumescent coatings to ensure safety and quality standards.”

Furthermore, he explained the importance of what is termed as ‘The Golden Thread’ – pivotal data that corroborates every phase of a new construction.

He clarified: “It’s imperative for each Principal Accountable Person to furnish accurate details to the supply chain, especially to those catering to the intumescent fire protection package.”

Beyond mere registration, the Principal Accountable Person should have meticulously evaluated all building safety risks, instituted measures to manage them, presented the safety case report to the BSR when solicited, and applied for a building assessment certificate when deemed necessary.

The BSR functions autonomously under the aegis of the Health and Safety Executive and has been instituted to enhance building safety standards, oversee building performance, and ensure the proficiency of industry experts and regulators.

IFSJ Comment

The Building Safety Act 2022 is a significant pivot in the realm of structural safety.

Its introduction underscores the necessity for stringent measures and amplified accountability, especially for buildings classified as ‘high risk’.

Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine Coatings’ emphasis on this act and its implications is not only timely but also crucial for those within the construction and safety sectors.

By equipping professionals with the requisite knowledge and tools, the act seeks to ensure that every new and existing structure is compliant, thereby ensuring the safety of its occupants.

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