New National Regulatory Body Established
The government has announced plans to set up a regulator for construction materials that will have the power to remove products from the market that present a significant safety risk. This will also offer protection to all new home owners and ensure materials used to build new houses are made safer.
This new national regulator body has been set up in the light of the fire disaster of Grenfell. The Grenfell Inquiry revealed allegations of malpractice by some manufacturers of construction products, including deliberate and dishonest attempts to game the system, proving the weaknesses of the present product testing regime.
The new regulatory body will have strong enforcement powers and ability to conduct their own product testing should any concerns arise. Manufacturers or businesses will need to ensure that their products are safe before being sold, alongside testing their products against the safety standards.
The regulator will operate within the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) which will be expanded and given up to £10 million in funding to establish the new function. This step marks the next major chapter in the government’s fundamental overhaul of regulatory systems which includes the publication of an ambitious draft Building Safety Bill, representing the biggest improvements to regulations in 40 years, and a new Building Safety Regulator that is already up and running in shadow form.