Revised fire safety engineering standard published

4 April 2019

The 2019 edition of BS 7974 has been published, having been ‘significantly revised’ by the British Standards Institution (BS).

The Fire Industry Association reported on the updated and amended standard, with its new version titled BS 7974: 2019 – Application of fire safety engineering principles to the design of buildings. Its original form as the 2001 edition of the standard ‘has been supplemented’ by a number of later guidance documents, termed as PD 7974-1 to 8, and covering ‘each sub-system of application in greater detail’.
 
BSI stated that it had updated the guidance due to ‘major changes’ since 2001 within both the fire and construction industries, as well as in working practices and the regulatory framework. New research has also been incorporated, with other recommendations included that were ‘previously contained’ in PD 797-0:2002 and PD 7974-8:2012.
 
The institution also noted that the updated standard features a ‘greater emphasis on the competence of the fire safety engineer’, while ‘additional recommendations’ have been included in terms of both quality assurance and verification of fire safety engineering reports. Terminology has been ‘consolidated’, with ‘every effort’ taken to ensure terms used are ‘consistent throughout’, and a reporting methodology is set out allowing for designs to be ‘readily assessed by approval bodies’.
 
Ant Burd, head of built environment at BSI, said: ‘As the demand for better and more innovative building design grows, the safety and protection of people, along with the asset itself, from fire remains of paramount importance. Based upon scientific and engineering insight, this framework allows for a range of alternative and complementary fire protection strategies that enable all of the design objectives to still be fulfilled safely.’