Cladding Fire Risk Investigations

Cladding Fire Risk Investigations

Cladding Fire Testing across the UK by RS Specialist Services

Following the tragic events at Grenfell Tower in 2017 the spotlight has fallen upon the potential fire risk to buildings and occupants due to external cladding systems.

Over-cladding of older buildings has become popular to improve their visual appearance and also their thermal performance. In addition, the use of rainscreen cladding panels on new buildings has also increased.

The installation of some of these systems has unfortunately resulted in a risk of external fire spread.

Since Grenfell Tower then there has been a rise in cladding fire tests carried out throughout the UK to determine the level of risks buildings impose to residents and visitors.

RS carry out investigations to identify the types of materials that have been used in a cladding system, conduct laboratory analysis to determine their flammability/combustibility and also undertake intrusive investigations to confirm the presence of cavity/fire barriers.

Particularly with rainscreen cladding systems if, during a fire, external panels catch alight they may bypass any fire breaks within the rain screen cladding system, thereby potentially compromising any fire compartmentation.

Flammable insulation can exacerbate this problem.

Inadequate fire/cavity barriers will allow fires to spread within the cladding system.

AsbestosRS carry out the following:

  • Establish the cladding build up
  • Remove cladding and insulation samples
  • Analyse samples to identify the materials used
  • Conduct flammability testing
  • Use optical borescopes to identify cavity/fire barriers
  • If suspects materials are present, work with Fire Engineers and Consultants to establish the fire risk represented by the cladding

For more information please contact Richard Sharp.

Services Overview

RS provides a professional, innovative, reliable and competetive service drawing on many years experience in the investigation, inspection and remediation of buildings and structures.