A Culture of Compliance
There are a few factors paramount to having a compliant smoke control solution, SE Controls have made a short checklist below of a few key points that may help you to decide if your smoke control solution is compliant:
Is my building compliant and are my tenants safe?
- Have the products in the smoke control system been tested together at an independent accredited facility and a Declaration of Performance (DoP) been issued?
- Have the products been designed, manufactured, installed and commissioned in accordance with the necessary regulations?
- Can your fire safety contractor evidence compliance to the regulations outlined below and provide you with the necessary documentation?
- Is your contractor a member of the Smoke Control Association?
Product Testing – Tested Solutions
Under the mandated UK Construction Product Regulations, products that have a harmonised European standard (hEN), must be CE certified against that standard. Windows automated for smoke ventilation fall into the smoke and heat exhaust ventilator (SHEV) standard EN12101-2.
EN 12101-2 dictates that actuators and vent profiles must be tested together as a single system, at an accredited facility, to all test annexes of the prescriptive standard. There are also strict audited procedures to fabricate and install the components, to ensure they are manufactured as tested. Failure to follow this procedure means that the required Declaration of Performance (DoP) certificate cannot be issued, therefore the solution is not compliant.
SE Controls have collaborated with leading facade system companies to independently test their popular window systems to the European smoke ventilator standard EN12101-2. Added to an audited fabrication and installation process, a CE marked solution is provided, with a Declaration of Performance (DoP) to prove compliance.
Visit our Tested Solutions website portal and register to view a range of support documents regarding specific window systems, tested products and industry related information.
Manufacture, Installation and Commissioning – Important Smoke Control Notice
If you are involved in the ownership, management or fire safety approval of high rise buildings, or if you install AOVs and smoke control systems, take note of the below information.
Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, the building owner or manager is responsible for ensuring the smoke ventilation system is compliant. Compliance doesn’t just mean having a fire safety contract for a building, compliance is about providing a regulated building which is safe for occupation.
If a contractor is used to install or maintain the smoke ventilation system, they must be competent to provide evidence that the system is compliant, and therefore safe, below are some key guidance and regulations to look out for:
BS7346-8 Code of Practice
BS7346-8 summarises the entire process from design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of the system.
Approved Document B
Approved Document B (ADB) provides guidance on complying with the building regulations with regards to means of escape, travel distances, vent locations, free area calculations, access and limiting fire spread.
BS9999 and BS9991
These standards cover fire safety in the design, management and use of non-residential and residential buildings respectively.
Regular Maintenance by Competent Engineers – Maintenance Guide
The maintenance of smoke ventilation systems is mandated by British Standard BS7346-8, which states a minimum of two service visits per annum are required by suitably trained engineers, who have access to the original design cause and effect, have all of the equipment necessary to interrogate the systems, and have direct access to replacement equipment should this be required.
You can’t afford to take the risk of non-compliance, but the task of assessing the current status of existing systems can be a time-consuming process and the outcomes can be inconclusive if not conducted by a professional organisation, such as SE Controls.
SE Controls undertake detailed compliance audits on smoke control solutions and provide reports on any remedial action required together with ongoing planned maintenance solutions delivered by our own qualified engineering team.
Under BS7346-8, there are also key requirements for specific documented records and cause & effect analysis of every aspect of the system, which some landlords or building owners inadvertently overlook, which has an impact on compliance and presents the risk of prosecution and fines.
Compliance to many landlords and building owners is reporting that service visits have taken place but they don't often realise that they are accountable for checking that their contractor can evidence compliance to ensure that tenants are safe and not at risk should a fire occur. If non-compliance is found, the landlord or building owner could face criminal prosecution.
Earlier this year the Smoke Control Association (SCA) introduced stringent criteria committing existing and new members to requirements for installer training, insurances, safety and quality assurance.
The new SDI 19 certification scheme, which has been developed by the Smoke Control Association (SCA) in partnership with IFC Certification and has been introduced to help raise standards across the industry. Developed to ensure a suitable level of competency is maintained in all aspects of smoke control systems, the scheme also covers a contractor’s ability to provide appropriate levels of service and maintenance following installation and commissioning, in line with a building’s type, size and use.
Such is the importance of the recently introduced initiative that it is now mandatory for any SCA member involved in the installation of smoke control systems to achieve the accreditation as a condition of membership.
SE Controls Corporate Overview
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For more information on compliant smoke control solutions please do not hesitate to contact us:
T: +44 (0) 1543 44 30 60