The introduction of the Building Safety Case in the Building Safety Act 2022, plays a significant role in the safeguarding of residents of high rise buildings.
Under new legislation, any owner of a high rise residential building (referenced in Part 4 of the Act) must create, hold and maintain a Building Safety Case, making it available to the Building Safety Regulator (BSR) upon request. This effort to reinforce the prevention of the spread of fire and mitigate the risk of structural failure is a monumental change for our industry.
Building owners need to understand what the base level building safety requirements are and what they mean to them. A Building Safety Case may be best understood as a structured argument on why your building is safe for occupation, evidencing the control measures and management systems that have been implemented and continue to be implemented, to mitigate spread of fire, structural failure and reduce the seriousness of an incident if one should occur.
Considering the critical role a Building Safety Case plays in safeguarding the residents of your building, it is essential that the integrity of this information is maintained throughout the building’s lifecycle. The collation of the building information is commonly known as the Golden Thread and it ensures that the appointed Accountable Person (the responsible party for registering their high rise residential buildings and creating, holding and maintaining the Building Safety Case) has all the necessary information to manage building safety risks.
To ensure this, the safe design and construction of high rise residential buildings will now be underpinned by a gateway process to:
- Ensure early consideration is given to fire safety.
- Manage change control.
- Preserve the integrity of the building and fire safety information.
BIM Academy has developed a 4 stage process that building owners can follow when constructing a Building Safety Case and how to comply with the above gateway process.
Our first stage in undertaking any strategic work is to review what currently exists, this will include understanding how many in scope buildings exist within an asset owner’s portfolio, what information currently exists on these buildings, and the processes and systems in place to support the maintenance of a Building Safety Case.
The next stage is to enable the first few steps in the roadmap and action plan to build capability. This will include identifying the Accountable Person, increasing awareness of the new responsibilities across the team and setting up the resident engagement strategies where needed.
The third stage is to collate all asset information to build the Golden Thread that will be the body of the building safety case and the final stage is the maintenance of this information to ensure it is accurate, correct and up to date.
Full details of this 4 stage process are available in the BIM Acadaemy’s free eBook: “How to Develop a Building Safety Case: 4 Stages to Compliance”. This eBook takes you through the process stage by stage, helping building owners to prepare for the October 2023 deadline – from which by law, any Building Safety Case must be made available to the BSR upon request.