The Grenfell fire inquiry has been told that cladding sold as fire class zero may not have been appropriately tested. Input to the inquiry has suggested that one insulation cladding product, found on parts of Grenfell Tower, may have been sold as Class 0 based on tests on a previous version of product, not the actual product sold. It was suggested that the class 0 claim for the new product was based on tests of only the foil facing, not the whole product, and that when the whole composite was later tested it failed to achieve Class 0. For another cladding product used on Grenfell Tower, it was suggested that the producer may have modified fire test setups to improve outcomes, in order to keep its product on the market.
Some media have also tried to cast doubts on the independence of fire safety researchers and experts, because they have received funding from cladding product manufacturers for research (e.g. Guardian UK 11/11/2020), or because they attended an information meeting organised by industry (Financial Times 5/11/2020). pinfa is not involved, but notes that the funding received was transparently declared in the one study cited, and that the UK Government has responded (in the Guardian article above) that it: “expected industry experts to attend conferences and seminars and that this did not5/11/20rohibit them from being independent.”
Weekly updates on the Grenfell Inquiry are available at www.insidehousing.co.uk
Media Coverage: Irish News 12/12/2020, Inside Housing 11/12/2020,Construction Manager Magazine 9/12/2020, Global Insulation News 19/11/2020, Irish Times, 9/12/2020, The Guardian, UK, 11/11/2020, Financial Times, 5/11/20.
“Study of fire behaviour of facade mock‐ups equipped with aluminium composite material‐based claddings, using intermediate‐scale test method”, E. Guillaume et al., Fire and Materials. 2018;1–17 https://doi.org/10.1002/fam.2635