Communities secretary provides cladding and high rise update

Angela Constance
Angela Constance

“Intensive” checks have been made on council tower blocks to establish the safety in the event of fires, communities secretary Angela Constance has said.

Last week the Scottish Government asked all local authorities and other Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) to provide tower block stock information to assist a ministerial review of Scottish regulations in the wake of the fatal Grenfell Tower blaze in West London.

Cladding is thought to have contributed to the rapid spread of fire, in which at least 79 people are believed to have died.

The government specifically wanted to find out if any high-rises are covered in the type of cladding used on Grenfell Tower.

Earlier this week, the Ministerial Working Group convened to examine building and fire safety regulatory framework confirmed that no aluminium composite material has been used on cladding in local authority high-rise dwellings.

But they said work is continuing to provide a “complete” picture for all high-rise flats in Scotland.

Ms Constance said: “Scottish building regulations state that cladding on high rise domestic buildings built since 2005, and cladding added to existing high rise domestic buildings since 2005, should be made of non-combustible materials or a cladding system that has met stringent fire tests.

“External cladding on high rise domestic buildings built before 2005 has to meet a Class 0 classification which was the most demanding anti-flame spread classification at that time.

“We have confirmation from all local authorities that aluminium composite material has not been used in the cladding of their high rise domestic buildings.”

She added: “We are working intensively with local authorities to complete the picture for all high rise domestic buildings, including those that are privately owned, as quickly as possible.”

Further updates will be provided in due course as information is collated and verified.

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