As a builder, you are ultimately responsible for the fire safety of a building. It is therefore important that you check that your building contractor complies with the requirements for the procurement of products subject to a DoP.
It is not uncommon for a project to be subject to time pressure; this can lead to a de-prioritisation when it comes to fire safety, which then becomes a last minute problem to solve. Short delivery times, low prices and a lack of documentation are factors that affect competitiveness in a crowd of serious industrial manufacturers who have longer delivery times and who submit the correct documentation. As a builder, you should never overlook the fact that fire safety is about personal safety, property protection and sustainability. It is therefore of the utmost importance that you start with planning and procurement procedures well in advance, so that the project is not affected by unnecessary time constraints.
A building that does not meet set legal requirements can be difficult to insure, which can have disastrous consequences for a construction project. Furthermore, a lack of documentation and non-compliance with the statutory requirements entails an increased risk of not being approved by the local building committee.
Checklist for builders and contractors
To keep in mind when requesting documentation:
- Request Appendix-E, which provides an overview of product performance.
- Request Appendix-C, which provides an overview of the manufacturer's quality system.
- Request a Declaration of Performance, which is a legal requirement. If there is no DoP, choose another product.
- Demand that your supplier provides documents related to e.g. product operation and maintenance.
- Visit the manufacturer's website to give you an idea of the company, references, etc.
- Be persistent. Always require documentation. If the DoP is missing, ask why. Remember that you, as a contractor, have the ultimate responsibility for your decisions.