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The Building Safety Bill, introduced into the House of Commons in July 2021, is an attempt by Government to overhaul current regulations on how residential buildings, especially higher risk, high-rise buildings, are constructed, maintained and made safe. This comes as a direct response to the Hackitt Report’s investigation into the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower in 2017.
There will be tougher penalties for those companies that fail to meet the new standards, including potential criminal charges. Homeowners will also have a greater say in how their buildings are managed and maintained.
Building owners will need to show clear lines of responsibility for safety throughout the building’s lifetime. They will also need to demonstrate what measures they have in place to manage the ongoing safety risks.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) will become the new regulator; taking on responsibility for the building control of all high-rise buildings and resourcing expertise from the fire service, building control and environmental health to become the newly qualified Registered Building Inspectors that will be required.
The Bill provides a framework for the changes, but there is a lack of detail. This makes it difficult to understand its full impact on the construction sector.
Whilst the primary aim is to address safety in higher risk buildings, there will be an impact from this Bill on all who work in design, construction, and maintenance of buildings in the future.
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Granite Building Warranties is a company registered in England and Wales (Company Number 11497543) with its registered office at 1st Floor, 5 Century Court, Tolpits Lane, Watford, WD18 9PX