Building survey reveals construction companies have changed little in response to report after Grenfell fire
Two years on from the Grenfell Tower fire, a majority of firms polled by Building in a new survey have yet to change the way they work in line with recommendations made in the Hackitt report.
As the industry awaits the launch of the government’s consultation on the recommendations of the Hackitt review into fire safety and the Building Regulations, Building’s survey revealed that more than half (56%) of firms said they had not changed how they assess the competence of their staff.
Nearly half (49%) said they had yet to change the way they carried out such competency checks on their supply chain partners.
And 46% had not been swayed by the Hackitt report’s recommendations to change the way they shared building safety information with supply chain partners.
Nearly one-third (32%) of firms reported no change in product specification and performance checks, while more than a third reported no change in terms of checking on the quality of work being undertaken on site.
Hackitt’s report called for a wholesale shift in attitudes towards building safety, yet when asked how much of a change had taken place in their own operation, as many as one-fifth of respondents reported “no change”. A similar proportion said there had been only “middling change” with nearly half of companies responding said there had been minor change.
But one-third of respondents (32%) reported that they were doing “much more” in terms of product specification and performance checks, while only 18% said they were significantly stepping up checks regarding the quality of on-site works.
The government confirmed that it would push ahead with the reforms Hackitt was calling for. Existing regulators would work alongside firms to trial better ways of monitoring developers, contractors and landlords with a focus on public safety, it said.
And as well as introducing a ban on combustible materials being used in buildings over 18m tall, the housing and communities secretary James Brokenshire recently threw down the gauntlet to the industry, warning earlier this year that there would be “no hiding place” for developers that flouted building safety rules.
ANALYSIS: Hackitt – where do we go from here?