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Why is it important to remediate non-compliant high-rise balconies with fire-rated products?

Remediating non-compliant high-rise balconies with A1 or A2 fire-rated products is crucial due to the paramount importance of fire safety – which has been an ever-present feature of the news agenda in recent years for good reason. ​ ​The Responsible Actors Scheme (RAS) for residential developers under sections 126-129 of the Building Safety Act 2022 came into force on 4 July 2023 and requires developers to assume accountability for rectifying ‘life-critical fire-safety’ issues in buildings measuring 11 meters or more, which they either developed or renovated within the past 30 years in England (unless their role was exclusively as a contractor).​ ​These requirements are in accordance with the terms of a Developer Remediation Contract (DRC) to be entered into between developers and the Secretary of State of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

High-rise buildings pose unique challenges when it comes to fire prevention and containment, particularly in outdoor spaces like balconies and terraces, but here’s why this remediation work is essential:

  • Safety to Life

In the event of a fire, non-compliant balconies can act as potential fire accelerants, allowing flames to spread quickly within and outside the building. Fire-rated products are designed to resist ignition and slow down the progression of flames, providing occupants with valuable time to evacuate safely.

  • Regulatory Compliance

The RAS is supported by planning and building control prohibitions that impose commercial consequences on any developer who is eligible for the scheme and is invited to join, but who chooses not to join or later fails to comply with the scheme’s membership conditions. By implementing fire-rated solutions, building owners can help ensure compliance and avoid potential fines or legal liabilities.

  • Protection of Property

Fire-rated materials not only safeguard human lives but also protect the property from fire damage. The use of products such as Dura Deck Aluminium or Dura Deck Inspire can won’t accelerate any structural damage caused by flames and smoke should the building catch fire, potentially saving substantial repair and replacement costs.

  • Community Confidence

Residents and occupants of high-rise buildings need the assurance that fire safety measures are in place. Remedying non-compliant balconies with fire-rated products demonstrates a commitment to their safety and well-being and means leaseholders are protected from paying to fix problems that they did not create and could not have prevented. We work with a range of contractors who are involved in building remediation projects and have also installed several projects ourselves using our Contract Installation team.

  • Long-Term Sustainability

Investing in fire-rated products contributes to the longevity and durability of the building. Composite materials such as porcelain decking and aluminium decking have a long low-maintenance design life, providing long-term value.​ ​If you’re working to correct historic defects in buildings, then we can help.

What products should you choose?

Dura Deck Aluminium is made from high grade T6 aluminium and is ideal for high-rise residential and mixed-use developments. With an anti-glare matt finish it’s a great option if your project requires an A2fl-s1 decking solution. ​ ​If an A1 fire rating’s what you need, strong, Dura Deck Inspire porcelain planks have a variegated wood grain finish which gives the deck the appearance of luxury traditional timber.​ ​Remediating non-compliant high-rise balconies with fire-rated products is a vital step toward mitigating fire risks, protecting lives, and upholding the safety standards mandated by recent important life-saving regulations. If you want to take a proactive approach to remediating non-compliant balconies or terraces, then talk to us. ​