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2024 promises “year of transformative step change” at Building Safety Regulator

22 January 2024

THE LATEST blog to appear on the Building Safety Regulator’s website points to a “coming of age” in 2023 as “significant milestones” were reached and the groundwork and foundations duly established for a “trusted, world-leading building safety regime” which places the safety of residents front and centre. In 2024, though, “fresh responsibilities and new milestones await” at the Health and Safety Executive.

The Building Safety Regulator is a “committed and focused” regulator that’s flexible, adaptive and responsive. Its “unwavering commitment” for 2024 continues to centre on progressing the critical agenda aimed at raising safety, standards and performance right across the built environment.

Throughout the next 12 months and beyond, guidance and insights will support stakeholders to develop a deeper collective understanding of what exactly the new building safety regime means for them. This includes what they will need to do in order to comply with the law and achieve the much-needed cultural shift first pinpointed by Dam Judith Hackitt in the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety.

Building control profession

April will be a key month for the building control profession as the registration requirements for building control inspectors and approvers becomes mandatory. Operational standards rules will be enforceable. Applying the new requirements and standards across both public and private sector providers will ensure the whole profession operates consistently to the same high standards, in turn “levelling the playing field” for the first time.

The Building Safety Regulator believes that increasing the competence and capability of the building control profession will improve the regulation of building work. This, in turn, will help to restore trust in the built environment.

“We want the building control profession to grow,” notes the Building Safety Regulator. “Improved status attracts and retains talent. Building control should be seen as a positive career choice for those entering the workforce.”

Higher-risk buildings

Beginning last October, the Building Safety Regulator’s role as the Building Control Authority for all higher-risk buildings (HRBs) in England is a move made to ensure that buildings are designed and constructed safely and to high standards.

For the thousands of existing HRBs in England, the Building Safety Regulator will also continue to oversee and drive the new stringent regulatory regime. It’s all focused on bringing about the systematic lasting change that’s needed for residents to be safe – and, importantly, to feel safe – where they live.

Following registration of residential HRBs becoming mandatory last October, ‘Principal Accountable Persons’ will have a duty to apply for a building assessment certificate for their buildings when directed to do so by the Building Safety Regulator. ‘Principal Accountable Persons’ must submit a Safety Case Report. This is a demonstration of how they are managing building safety risks in relation to the potential spread of fire and structural failure.

They also need to submit their Residents’ Engagement Strategy and, in addition, ensure there’s a system in place to report Mandatory Occurrences to the Building Safety Regulator.

As the year progresses, the Building Safety Regulator will continue to work in partnership with stakeholders, sharing knowledge, expertise and data. The Building Safety Regulator is “steadfast” in its remit to oversee and uphold a stringent building safety regulatory regime and promote competence across industry. As a result, this will help to transform the built environment and the culture of those who shape and nurture it.