Updates on the Building Safety Bill

Since the tragedy of Grenfell Tower shone a light on the lack of traceable safety information in many of the country’s buildings, work has been in order to achieve a much-needed change in the building and construction industry. Building on Dame Judith Hackitt’s review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety, which highlighted the need for regulatory change, the Bill introduces several measures that will be taken to increase safety in UK high risk buildings.

On the 19th of January the Bill is expected to move into the Report Stage in the House of Commons. This means MPs will be given the opportunity to propose further amendments to the Bill.  After the Royal Assent (RA), when it officialy becomes a law, the various provisions are expected to come into force within two to 18 months. You can find an overview of the timeline here. For example, requirements for a golden thread of safety information will come into practice about 18 months after the RA.

Before the Bill is finished processing, it still has a few stages in the House of Commons and then will have to be passed through the House of Lords. Assuming no unexpected delays occurs, the Bill is expected to become a law sometime in 2022. And while these regulations surely will affect the industry standard in many ways, professionals are already looking at similar solutions to ensure safety in their projects. BIM is a recommended method for builders to create a golden thread but there are still a few steps the construction industry will have to take before a life cycle approach to information can be achieved. Read more about the concept “golden thread of information” here.

Fire engineering has long lagged regarding innovation, digitalization, and modernization. The BIM tools needed have not been available and the need for change lacking. However, solutions (such as Bimfire Tools) are popping up and many professionals across the industry are understanding the need for fire engineering in BIM. At the samt time UK takes lead on fire safety regulation. In short, there are many reasons for the fire consultant to keep an eye out for BIM.


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