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Grenfell disaster: ACM cladding system passes fire test

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Fire safety testing has shown that some aluminium composite cladding complies with Building Regulations in particular circumstances

The government said a process carried out by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) showed that certain cladding systems using aluminium composite material with a category two fire-resistant polyethylene filler and stone wool insulation could offer a possible solution for buildings found to have hazardous exteriors.

Ministers ordered a series of cladding fire safety checks after the tragic Grenfell Tower fire in west London in June, which is thought to have killed about 80 people.

‘The expert panel notes that cladding and insulation materials can vary between manufacturers and can have different calorific values,’ said a government statement today.

‘The way materials have been fitted and maintained can also affect the safety of the cladding system. Therefore the clear advice from the expert panel is that building owners need to continue to take professional advice as to whether any remedial work is necessary to ensure the safety of their building.’

Tests carried out previously by the government found that a particular system using aluminium composite material cladding with a category three polyethylene filler combined with stone wall insulation failed to meet safety standards.

The BRE tests feature replica cladding systems attached to 9m-high wall sections, which are examined on whether they can resist vertical fire spread.

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