Construction products

Independent review of construction product testing regime

To identify any potential weaknesses in the system and make recommendations for improvement, the government commissioned an independent review of the construction product testing system and appointed Paul Morrell OBE and Anneliese Day QC to lead it.

The independent review will undertake a critical assessment of the construction product testing and certification system. It will examine how the current system can be strengthened, to ensure that construction products are safe and perform as they are labeled and marketed.

The review committee will report to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government later this year.

Review panel

Terms of reference

1. Evidence from the Grenfell Tower public inquiry brought to light instances where the construction products tested did not represent those placed on the market and the combination of products tested was inaccurately described in the test report.

2. Other test irregularities discovered since 2017 involved siding and fire doors, leading among other government interventions to a complete market withdrawal of all composite fire doors. In these cases, the products sold did not match those that had been tested and certified, and erroneous test evidence was then used by manufacturers to support claims that their products were suitable for use in residential buildings in the region. great height, when it was not.

3. Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent review of building regulations and fire safety identified weaknesses in the building product testing system, while acknowledging that “[t]he system that covers the testing, labeling and marketing of products is at least as complicated as the whole regulatory system ”, and that“ significant additional work is needed […] to create a comprehensive scheme that ensures that all products used in construction are properly tested and certified ”.

4. The government is committed to ensuring that the construction product testing regime is effective and inspires public and market confidence. On January 19, the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government announced that the government would commission an independent review of the scheme under which construction products are tested, certified and marketed in the UK.

5. The independent review will identify systemic issues with how construction products are tested, whether stand-alone or in assemblies, and how test results are used to manage the safety risks these products pose, and recommend ways to resolve these issues. The review will answer the question: ‘How should the UK construction product safety testing system and system data usage be strengthened, to instill confidence that these products are safe and perform as labeled and marketed when incorporated into construction work? ? “

6. The exam will do this by:
a. Map the construction product testing, certification, marketing, sales, re-testing and recall system, including the legal framework under which this occurs.
b. Consider evidence from various sources and assess what is / could go wrong with this system.
vs. Recommend how this system should be strengthened, taking into account broader government and industry reforms and any economic or practical implications of implementing the recommendations.

7. The independent review will prioritize making recommendations on weaknesses in the system which, if not addressed, could expose citizens to unnecessary security risks. The scope of the review is not limited to construction products intended for use in high-rise residential buildings. The testing system for products not intended for use in construction is outside the scope of this review.

8. The review will examine the respective roles of government, regulators, the UK Accreditation Service (UKAS), conformity assessment bodies, testing houses and manufacturers. The review will seek evidence from these parties and any other stakeholders and experts with whom it sees fit to engage.

9. The independent review will be led by a committee composed of:
a. Paul Morrell OBE (president of the journal);
b. Anneliese Day QC.

ten. The review panel will be supported by officials from the Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) and the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS), which the government recently announced will be the national regulatory body for the safety of construction products.

11. The review will run in parallel and fully cooperate with the work of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry led by Sir Martin Moore-Bick. The review will not be involved in the allocation of responsibility for the events leading up to the Grenfell Tower fire.

12. The review panel will submit a report to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government in the summer of 2021 and the government will issue the report and a response as soon as possible.

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