Last week (27/05/2021), the Department for Education opened their consultation on Building Bulletin 100 (BB100). This document is described by the Department as “non-statutory guidance on fire safety for schools. The guidance covers designing a school building so that pupils and staff will have early warning if a fire breaks out and can evacuate quickly and safely. BB100 advises how to minimise the spread of fire and how to ensure the building structure is adequately resistant to fire. It also includes requirements for access and facilities for the Fire and Rescue Services.”
The Department for Education note “BB100 requires updating and simplifying, to see if additional fire safety measures should be included and whether there is content that is no longer needed.”
In the draft BB100 revised document (Fire Safety Design for Schools) clause 1.11 notes the importance of recognising Third Party Certification Schemes, which is encouraged as “it is evidence that the supplier is attempting to achieve a higher standard than the minimum requirement, and that they have recognised quality assurance procedures. Specifying third party certification is also a way for the designer to try to ensure that the client is getting a product fit for purpose. Building Control bodies are also likely to accept the use of third-party schemes, as evidence of compliance with relevant standards.”
BAFE encourages anyone involved in school building safety management to really focus on this aspect, as the overview of the BB100 document outlines this document “also sets out the requirements for access and facilities for the Fire and Rescue Services”. The Fire and Rescue Service being the prosecuting body for fire safety legislation will observe all appropriate actions taken as acting with full due diligence in keeping your building safe from fire, mitigated as best as possible.
Stephen Adams, Chief Executive – BAFE, comments “the wording the Department of Education have used in their BB100 document is well and clearly written. Any school building with vulnerable people including children should unquestionably be exceeding the minimum requirements when assessing their fire safety design (and subsequent actions required). We strongly believe current and valid evidence of Third Party Certification identifies and delivers contractors who have proved their intent to operate following appropriate standards and best working practice.”
The Building Bulletin 100: Fire Safety Design for Schools consultation opened 27/05/2021 and closes 18/08/2021. For documents and how to provide your view can be found on the Department for Education website https://consult.education.gov.uk/technical-standards/building-bulletin-100/
Source: Building Bulletin 100: Fire Safety Design for Schools Government consultation
Source: Fire Safety Design for Schools Building Bulletin 100 (revised) Draft for consultation