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Hot topic for architects

Social landlords designing in shared waste and recycling facilities for housing schemes must ensure wheeled bin stations are 6m or more from property to comply with CFPA guidance.

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Whether the brief is a redevelopment or new build, Fire Risk Assessors working for social landlords, and follow Confederation of Fire Protection Associations Europe guidance, will expect a minimum distance between bins and residential property.

Following Grenfell awareness of fire safety issues have never been more topical and although cladding is currently the focus, the regularity of fires caused by wheeled bin fires spreading to domestic property, makes this a hot topic.

Mr Nigel Deacon of metroSTOR, the UK’s main provider of bin stores, said: “Waste materials can be set alight very easily and burn very quickly, giving off large volumes of toxic smoke. If this were to occur close to a dwelling the likelihood of fire rapidly spreading towards the occupants is very high indeed, particularly at night-time when emergency response times would be low.

“This obviously has huge implications for Registered Providers across the UK and the architects and specifiers who design for them.

“Closer analysis of the guidance reveals that the 6m distance can vary based on the number of bins being stored, and can also be substituted with a structure having 30 minutes fire resistance. When seeking an appropriate solution there is a clearly a need for a consistently pragmatic, risk-based approach, and in many cases assistance from providers with specialist expertise.”

metroSTOR have been developing specialist enclosures for the safe, secure storage of waste and recycling bins within the social housing sector since 2012, and in addition to failsafe reduction of fire risk the units have also been proven to significantly reduce costs associated with fly-tipping, sidewaste and contaminated bins, massively increase recycling participation and actively contribute to neighbourhood improvement programmes.

Mr Deacon added: “Having now manufactured and installed close to 10,000 units across the UK to date, our team can justifiably lay claim to being market leaders, and the only organisation able to provide social landlords with a comprehensive service including detailed site survey and preparation of reports, assistance with planning and consultation, followed by a complete installation, commissioning and maintenance package.”

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