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keenancdm  
#1 Posted : 17 February 2021 18:12:03(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
keenancdm

On a very large roof, on a 6 storey residential building, with a roof access hatch leading to a mansafe system for inpection and maintenance purposes, is there a statutory requirement for secondary escape (ie a second hatch)?   My own view is that yes there should be but looking for confirmation if this is the case or not.

Many thanks if anyone can point me in the right direction as I can't find any relevant guidandce or regs online.

PS: This is a new built project, bot yet built, so now is the time to get this right, hence the question.

Roundtuit  
#2 Posted : 17 February 2021 20:47:27(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Your view being based upon?

From your description the design is for infrequent maintenance "purposes" access rather than utilising the roof space on a regular basis e.g. as a sun-deck or outdoor bar nor do you describe it as a prescribed escape route from the building - as such why would a second access be necessary?

There is plenty of guidance within the various (devolved assembly) planning portals

https://www.gov.scot/policies/building-standards/monitoring-improving-building-regulations/

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/index

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/approved-documents

thanks 2 users thanked Roundtuit for this useful post.
keenancdm on 18/02/2021(UTC), keenancdm on 18/02/2021(UTC)
Roundtuit  
#3 Posted : 17 February 2021 20:47:27(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Your view being based upon?

From your description the design is for infrequent maintenance "purposes" access rather than utilising the roof space on a regular basis e.g. as a sun-deck or outdoor bar nor do you describe it as a prescribed escape route from the building - as such why would a second access be necessary?

There is plenty of guidance within the various (devolved assembly) planning portals

https://www.gov.scot/policies/building-standards/monitoring-improving-building-regulations/

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/index

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/approved-documents

thanks 2 users thanked Roundtuit for this useful post.
keenancdm on 18/02/2021(UTC), keenancdm on 18/02/2021(UTC)
keenancdm  
#4 Posted : 18 February 2021 09:17:15(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
keenancdm

Thanks for your reply and apologies as I wasn't perhaps clear...

My view was based on a memory of another project with a similar situation where two hatches were provided for that reason. It was some years back and with another company and I don't have any records - it may have simply been a client or team choice to install 2 rather than 1. I couldn't recall if the 2 were by choice or statutory requirement, hence the question. Just wanted to close off the niggling question in the back of my mind.

My question asking if anyone could point me in the right direction was in terms of anything that 'confirms' two hatches would be required (I'm aware of and regularly use the guidance you linked) since I can't find any.  Obviously my research and the absence of anything to confirm 2 hatches, more likely simply confirms, as you indicate, that 2 are not required.   

Thanks.

Edited by user 18 February 2021 09:17:54(UTC)  | Reason: formatting paras

Brian Hagyard  
#5 Posted : 18 February 2021 09:44:22(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Brian Hagyard

What do you mean by "a very large roof" ? I would think the need for 2 hatches would be decided by travel distance, and where the hatches lead (risk assessment). We have a similar situation with our building which is now 3 years old. Two staircases (which are our escape routes) one at either side of the building - with a hatch at each side. Hence anyone carrying out maintance on the roof can use the nearest hatch for escape if needed - or go to the second if one is blocked by the fire.

I am not a building control expert but there must be some guidance in one of their codes? Sorry cannot see waht documents previouse person replyed to.

keenancdm  
#6 Posted : 18 February 2021 09:51:27(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
keenancdm

Thanks Brian, it's very large by the standards of projects I work on but likely not others standards - Roof over a 5 storey building in a 'V' formation with each leg approx 55m long and the access hatch positioned at the bottom of the 'V'.  I now have a call into a fire engineer for his advice so hopefully have a definative answer shortly in relation to the statutory position at least.

keenancdm  
#7 Posted : 18 February 2021 16:59:27(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
keenancdm

An update for the benefit of anyone reading this now or in future - I spoke with a fire engineer for advice on this today and here is an extract of an email in which I passed his responses on to the project team...

  • He agrees that the Building Regs don't cover this specific situation so no guidance available in this regard.
  • That said however, he advised that Building Control Officers have been known to raise the lack of a secondary escape off the roof in this scenario due to the risks we ourselves have identified.
  • The end user's own operational risk assessment may well identify the need for a secondary escape off the roof for maintenance operatives.
  • Would not be so problematic if the hatch was located in the more usual position of within a protected area (stairwell/corridor), but being in an unprotected area/private room gives greater risk of undiscovered fire and thus escape risk, particularly if the room includes storage of materials providing a fire load.  
  • No issue as such with the travel distance itself to the hatch as an escape, but is an issue if the room under the hatch has a fire and the person on the roof is unaware till too late and can't escape via the hatch.
  • Potential Mitigation - Move hatch into the more normal position of within a protected area, not a private room. Operatives are then escaping off the roof into a fire protected area.
  • Potential Mitigation - Create a small room/store space specifically to house the roof access with only that purpose and no other use/fire load.
  • Potential Mitigation -  Operatives accessing the roof arrange for a temporary secondary means of escape to be present during the duration of their works.
  • Potential Mitigation -  Operatives accessing the roof allow for an extra person to stay in the room as safeguard to warn of any risk to their escape (relies on individuals following rules and so low on the risk control hierarchy).
thanks 2 users thanked keenancdm for this useful post.
Alan Haynes on 18/02/2021(UTC), Roundtuit on 19/02/2021(UTC)
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