Grenfell fire ‘could have been avoided’ with regulations review
SIR DAVID Amess, of the All Party Parliamentary Fire Safety and Rescue Group, believed that the fire ‘may not have happened’ if the building regulations had been reviewed.
Inside Housing interviewed Sir David, who noted that ‘tragically, we feel that if these building regulations had been reviewed then the Grenfell disaster may not have happened’, with the group ‘calling on government to update the building regulations for years’, but ‘successive ministers have delayed a review’. In March earlier this year the group also warned that the delay in a review ‘was putting tower blocks at risk’.
The news site noted that former Housing Minister Gavin Barwell had told MPs in October 2016 that the government would review Approved Document B (ADB) as a consequence of the Lakanal House fire, but ‘no action was taken’ until after the Grenfell Tower fire. Sir David added that there are ‘any number of anxious people’ living in tower blocks concerned about fire safety, with this the group’s job to ‘ensure this does not fall off the parliamentary agenda’.
He also stated that ‘I would be very disappointed if parliament doesn’t agree that we drive this whole agenda forward’, and that it has been ‘consistently advised’ by experts that the regulations needed to be revised ‘because of new materials and building techniques regularly being introduced’.