What are the regulations around Class A Decking? [Blog]

What are the regulations around Class A Decking? [Blog]

A blog written by Alfresco Floors

In February we heard from the UK Housing Secretary that the government was announcing an unprecedented £5 billion investment into building safety. They will fully fund the removal and replacement of unsafe cladding on residential buildings of 18m or above (6 storeys).

Since the Grenfell Tower disaster, building regulations and fire safety have been the centre of rising concerns. The current building regulations surrounding Class A building materials came into place in December 2018 following the disaster.

At this time, the Grenfell Inquiry is ongoing but recent news reports have highlighted how the business responsible for the Tower’s cladding had insisted they had no control over the type of materials specified. They claim that it was for architects to decide whether they met fire safety regulations.

As architects in charge of decisions regarding building design and safety, being on top of the current statutory regulations is of utmost importance.

In this article, Alfresco Floors will discuss the regulations surrounding Class A decking for balconies, with the focus being on current fire safety regulations on high rise buildings and their external flooring.

What are the Class A Decking regulations?

The current building legislation that concerns external flooring such as decking is The Building (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (S.I. 2018/ 1230) and amended Approved Document B and Approved Document 7 Guidance.

This set of Class A regulations bans the use of combustible materials on high rise buildings (18m) on external walls, and specified attachments (balconies). Any materials specified in such systems must be A2-s1, d0 rated or Class A1 under the European classification system (Euroclass) set out in the standard BS EN 13501-1.

The high rise buildings in question include any building above 18m which is used for residential purposes, whether an apartment block, student accommodation, care home, hospital, or boarding school.

The ban focuses on new build constructions, meaning current buildings do not have to be retrofit to meet the current standard., however this also covers refurbishment projects as well as building conversions.

What are the Class A Decking options?

Following the introduction of the above set of regulations, the implications for the construction industry has been a narrower set of flooring solutions for high rise balconies and other specified attachments.

As previous popular options for balcony decking consist of combustible elements such as wood or composite materials, architects are now left with a limited selection of decking surface materials.

Fortunately, Class A external decking still comes in a variety of sizes, shapes, colours, and materials (including porcelain, natural stone and aluminium). You can create stunning external flooring solutions with materials that are attractive as well as practical: weather-resistant and non-combustible.

Conclusion: Choose Alfresco for your Class A Decking

Alfresco Floors provide complete and comprehensive Class A-rated sub-frame systems: A-PED, REIF DuraLink and AR-System. Alfresco also supply a large variety of Class A-rated surface products: aluminium decking, porcelain tiles, concrete and natural stone pavers.

The team at Alfresco Floors have unrivalled experience in exterior flooring. They are experienced in all sorts of technical challenges and just about every type of ‘raised floor’ installation system. Alfresco Floors focus their efforts exclusively on the products and solutions that they know offer the best combination of not only fire safety but price, prestige, and practicality.

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Alfresco Floors are experts in Class A fire-rated external flooring systems. Their extensive hands-on experience means they can provide you with the safest and most robust solution to whatever space you are working on.

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