MIMA: Comment on Hackitt

Posted On: 
17th May 2018

‘Insufficient' - MIMA’s first reaction to Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent report on Building Regulations and Fire Safety. MIMA firmly believes that the report should have gone further to ensure that the residents of high-rise buildings are safe, and feel safe, by the simple and practical measure of requiring that only non-combustible materials may be used on mid and high-rise & high occupancy/high risk buildings.

Credit: 
PA Images

In the absence of immediate ban as implemented in other countries, MIMA welcomes Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government James Brokenshire’s announcement that there will be a consultation on introducing such a ban.

Sarah Kostense-Winterton, Executive Director at MIMA, representing the non-combustible insulation manufacturers comments “what we don’t see from this report is the solution in the short to medium term whilst cultural changes take effect. Something that will take many years. Dame Judith should have gone further to recommend that Buildings Regulations only allow non-combustible materials to be specified for use in mid to high-rise & high occupancy/high risk buildings as well as recommend a ban on desktop studies in relation to fire safety.”

“Designers need to know exactly what they can and cannot use in our buildings. Occupants need to know what is on their buildings, their homes, their schools and their hospitals. This should be mandatory, underpinned by legislation and effective enforcement and not left in unofficial industry guidance and subject to misinterpretation or ambiguity, in order to protect public safety.”

MIMA urges Theresa May’s government to go this extra step to implement the use of only non-combustible materials on top of this suite of recommendations. Only this approach as an entire package - not taken in silo or piecemeal - will have the desired outcome protect he public and drive change within the industry. It is mandatory that public safety is at the heart of any change and the resulting real and practical action must be led by Government from the front and not just left to industry to enact.