FIS has today responded to the the Department for Levelling Up Housing and Communities (DLUHC) consultation on changes to the guidance in England using Approved Document B (ADB).  This consultation includes the recommendation to remove national classes using the BS476 series as a method of demonstrating compliance.

The reason behind the change is that potential flaws in Approved Document B and the use of the national classification standards for Reaction to Fire and Fire Resistance were identified in both the Building A Safer Future work and during the Grenfell Inquiry.  As part of this, it was highlighted that the BS476 series standards have not been reviewed by the British Standards Institution (BSI) in detail for some time (typically over 20 years) whereas the European equivalents continue to be updated on a regular basis.

Through an extensive consultation with members concerns have been raised that this approach would be more problematic when looking at Fire Resistance.  Here manufacturers have been more heavily reliant on testing to British Standards.  This test evidence would all be rendered defunct by the proposed change and a substantial programme of retesting will be required to support the determination of products and systems commonly used today.

Click here for a fully copy of the FIS Position Paper and Response to Consultation on Omitting National standards from ADB March 2023

You can see a full copy of the consultation which closes on the 17th March here.  Please do consider adding your own response.