BESA warns Gove that cladding plan is not enough

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cladding plan
© John Gomez

The Building Engineering Services Association (BESA) has praised Housing Minister Michael Gove for the new cladding plan but has warned that it is not enough to completely fix the scandal

Under the cladding plan housebuilders who make an annual profit of £10m+ have until March to address fire safety issues in buildings between 11 and 18 metres in height or face legal action.

The period during which leaseholders can sue builders after completion has also been extended from six to 30 years.

However, BESA has said that cladding was only one part of the fire safety problem and the government must take further action.

Fire safety goes beyond cladding

Mr Gove deserves credit for trying to tackle this extremely complex issue and putting right a serious injustice,” said the Association’s head of technical Graeme Fox.

“However, in many cases fire safety problems go well beyond cladding. Many buildings also have defective or missing fire breaks, unsafe insulation, lack adequate smoke ventilation, and use other flammable materials. Who will pay to fix those problems?

The Grenfell inquiry

“The Grenfell inquiry has shone a spotlight on shoddy workmanship, but it has also uncovered considerable problems with the way some building materials are tested and marketed. Most contractors buy or specify products in good faith having been presented with what should be compelling evidence that they comply with building regulations and are safe.

“All parts of the supply chain have to learn from this scandal, and responsibility needs to be properly shared. Only then can we start to fix the ‘culture’ that led to this problem in the first place.”

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