The British Standards Institute's most recent guidance is PAS (publicly available specification) 9980/2022. This code governs fire risk assessments as well as the assessment of external wall construction and cladding. This code was created to clarify the confusion caused by the Consolidated Advice Note that stated multi-occupancy buildings, regardless of their height, would need an EWS1 review.
What Goals Does PAS 9980 Have?
These are the goals outlined in the PAS9980:
- Fire engineers can quickly assess and evaluate the risk of fire spreading through exterior wall construction.
- To ensure that recipients of FRAA understand the process and how it was interpreted.
- Non-fire experts can review FRAA. To understand the potential for external fire spreading in the building's fire strategy context.
- This document aims to improve understanding of fire risks associated with external wall construction as well as limit the scope of any FRAA. This will ensure that new construction conforms to new building standards.
- To allow frames to be described in standard terms.
- To ensure consistency between frames.
- To provide a foundation for documentation of FRAS.
- FRAA training is provided to assure consistency and increase the number of FRAA-certified professionals.
- A national standard is required to ensure consistency in FRAS. This will satisfy professional indemnity/pi insurance.
FOR Whom Is The Guidance In PAS 9980 Designed?
This guidance is available to fire engineers and other qualified building professionals who are qualified to perform fire risk assessments or appraisals. This code of ethics contains recommendations to ensure that the person conducting the FRAEW (Fire Risk Assessments of External Walls) is competent. The Facade Consultants guidelines for the qualified professional conducting the assessments encourage industry consistency.
How Does The PAS 9990 Guide Balconies?
The PAS 9980 divides balconies into these main categories:
- These are built entirely within the curtilage structure;
- These extend beyond the building's main structure, benefiting from an extension on the floor slab.
- These extend beyond the primary structure of a building and are attached to an exterior wall.
The FRAEW states that every material used in building a balcony must be examined, no matter what material type. It is crucial to evaluate their contribution to spreading fire during the FRAEW. The building's rating will be affected if the patio is made from high-combustible materials.
It also states that any non-combustible material can replace combustible materials, such as wood decking or composite decking. For more information, you can contact FR Consulting.
What Approach Recommends A PAS For The FRAA?
The PAS 9980 introduces the risk-based five-step approach. It helps qualified personnel identify, rate and assess fire risks in buildings. It guides on improving risk ratings. It is the fire danger that determines a building's fire risk classification.
What Does The PAS9980 Mean For Building Safety?
To help guide the industry, the PAS 9980 was created to lower the EWS1-exempt building. It does not specify the minimum height but states that multi-story, multi-occupancy buildings fall under the EWS1 definition. This could mean that mortgage lenders and professional indemnity insurer providers may continue to use the same practices as before, trapping landlords in a vicious circle.