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Government concludes second round of cladding fire tests

03 August 2017

THE SECOND in the government’s series of fire safety tests of cladding and insulation combinations has been completed and 111 buildings across the UK have failed the test.

The fire safety tests of cladding and insulation combinations has been completed by the Building Research Establishment (BRE). The latest test was of a wall cladding system consisting of Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) cladding with a polyethylene filler (category 3) with stone wool insulation.

The government’s expert panel advises that the results show this combination does not meet current building regulation guidance. 111 buildings are currently known to have this combination of materials in their wall cladding systems – 90 of which are local authority or housing association owned or managed.

Cladding samples from all these buildings had already been tested and failed earlier combustibility tests conducted by BRE. Building owners were advised to take immediate action by implementing interim safety measures and working with their local fire and rescue service to complete a fire safety audit.

Adding to earlier advice provided to building owners following the initial tests, further detailed advice have been issued and the government has warned that they need to act on this advice to ensure the safety of residents. The government is working closely with all affected building owners to ensure the advice is being followed.

On 28 July, the government announced the independent review of building regulations and fire safety, which will be chaired by Dame Judith Hackitt. It will examine the regulatory system around the design, construction and on-going management of buildings in relation to fire safety as well as related compliance and enforcement issues. The government’s fire testing programme continues and further test results will be published when they are available.