New building safety regulator set to be introduced by the Government

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New building safety regulator set to be introduced by the Government

New proposals published by the government this week have outlined plans to create a new building safety regulator that will oversee all elements of construction and safety management.

The new proposals are a direct result of the Grenfell Tower tragedy and were recommended by Dame Judith Hackitt’s post- Grenfell review of fire safety and building regulations last year.

The outlined plans will have significant implications for housing providers across the UK, requiring organisations to register all forms (existing and new) of high-rise property to the newly formed regulator. The end result will see certificates issued to providers detailing the works that will need to be completed in order for the buildings and their tenants to remain safe. New, tougher rules will also be enforced for those organisations that do not act and continue to have high-level safety risk buildings within their portfolio.

Original, recommendations by Dame Judith looked set to only apply for building’s over 30 metres high. However, the government has instead opted to apply them to all buildings over 18 metres – in line with what the current building regulations are. Although, the 30 metre threshold will be enforced for some of the new system requirements.

Further details, highlight how ‘dutyholders’ or ‘responsible persons’, will be required to ensure that individuals take responsibility for safety within high-rise buildings, in an effort to improve accountability across the sector – should persistent safety failures occur, these individuals could then face prosecution from the new body.

Whilst it is not yet clear who the new regulator will be, we at Pennington Choices are supportive of, and welcome the proposal.

Lee Woods, operations director at Pennington Choices, said: “We have championed for a long time, the need for the social housing sector to have improved levels of accountability and assurance on building and tenant safety across the board, and it is encouraging to see that positive action is being taken to address this.

Importantly, we believe the proposal recognises that Boards need to have a basic, but sufficient level of understanding of what landlord’s health and safety obligations and building safety should be so that they are equipped with the knowledge to govern this process and challenge their organisations adopted approach.

It is vital that the sector embraces this change, not only to restore confidence in the sector’s building safety systems, but importantly so that residents can once again feel safe and secure within their own homes.”

An eight week consultation period on the proposals has now commenced, with stakeholders responses expected by 31st July.

For information on how our experts can review and validate your organisations safety requirements, get in touch today.

To read the full proposals click here.

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