Requirement B1 Means of Warning and Escape
For the purposes of Part B of the Building Regulations an LD3 system is considered to be adequate. The system itself should therefore be installed in accordance with the guidance for LD3 systems in BS 5839-6:2004.
The Housing Act 2004 replaced the previous housing fitness standard with a statutory framework for assessing and tackling hazards in housing - including fire hazards.
Within a house designated as a 'House in Multiple Occupation' such devices may still need to be provided between the private areas (ie bedrooms) and the common parts (ie circulation spaces, living room, kitchen etc).
This article:Approved Document B:No Simple Answer(PDF 405 Kb) on the Samuel Heath website may also be of interest.
A protected stairway should be enclosed with fire resisting construction and fire resisting doors in order to protect people escaping down the stairs from a fire in the accommodation.
It may not always be necessary to provide fire doors on cupboards if they are small and the fire risk is low. An alternative to providing a fire door on a bathroom is to include the bathroom within the stair enclosure, thus removing the need for a fire door.
A fire-resisting door should be regarded as a complete installed assembly. Thus the door, the frame and any ironmongery should be considered when assessing its suitability. In most cases, however, it should be possible to retain the existing frame. If in doubt, the test report for the door being installed will include details of the door frame in which it was tested.
Fire doors are often thicker and much heavier than other internal doors. Where existing frames are retained it may be necessary to replace or relocate the door stops and to install additional fixings back to the structure. The joint between the frame and the surrounding structure should be adequately sealed and the operating gap between the door and the frame should be kept to a minimum (usually 3-4mm).
Requirement B3 Internal Fire Spread (structure)
Item 2 of Table 3 (Maximum nominal internal diameter of pipes passing through fire separating element) now makes it clear that a uPVC pipe, up to 110mm in diameter, can pass through a wall or floor separating a dwellinghouse from an integral garage. The pipe should, however, still be fire stopped in accordance with paragraph 7.8. This would involve sealing around the pipe where it penetrates the wall or floor using a suitable material or a proprietary system as described in Paragraph 7.14.
Requirement B5 Access and facilities for the fire service
Guidance in both Volumes of the Approved Document Part B states there should be vehicle access for a pump appliance to within 45m of all points within dwellings. This is to take account of the actual distance that the fire fighters need to carry kit and lay hoses from the vehicle to reach a potential fire.
Provision of water supplies does not, on its own, reduce the physiological impact on firefighters of travelling long distances whilst carrying heavy equipment. Water from private hydrants may still need to be pumped before it can be used for firefighting.
Where it is proposed to adopt an alternative approach to meeting requirement B5 (Access and facilities for the fire service). It would be advisable to seek the advice of the fire and rescue service who can advise on the practicalities of fire fighting.