Bauder Pledges Support to Industry Safety Directive

Bauder is the first flat roof waterproofing manufacturer to pledge its support to the National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC) newly launched ‘Safe2Torch’ guidance for the specification writing (at the initial survey and design stage) and the use of safe installation techniques for reinforced bitumen membranes on flat roofs which will markedly reduce risk for clients, building owners and constructors.

On 3rd July, the NFRC released its guidance document that further reinforces key safety principles for roofing contractors, manufacturers, architects, surveyors and specifiers to ensure that all have the skills, knowledge and experience to identify and control fire risks under their responsibilities within the Construction Design and Management Regulation (CDM) 2015.  The CDM regulations state that, ‘The person who selects products for use in construction is a designer and must take account of health and safety issues arising from their use. If a product is purpose-built, the person who prepares the specification is a designer and so are manufacturers, if they develop a detailed design.’  This highlights how all in the project delivery team have responsibilities to fully consider hazardous details and deliver acceptable construction solutions.

In alignment with the NFRC and the CDM Regulations, Bauder has designed a secure torch-free bitumen membrane detailing solution for specification where roof details are constructed with, or in the vicinity of, combustible construction materials such as timber substrates or upstands, abutments to cladding, thatch, roof tiles or slates that could be at risk from ignition.

The foundation for Bauder’s torch-free detailing is its group of self-adhesive, SBS modified bitumen membranes for the vapour control layer, underlayer and cap sheet which are hot air welded within a marked 900mm radius exclusion zone from the combustible material to comply with the NFRC’s responsible specification writing information.   The manufacturer has delivered a practical solution to the industry that enables installation programme times to remain achievable without compromise to the longevity or durability of the waterproofing system.

“This approach is one the whole industry will be embracing and we are delighted to be the first to support this initiative” says Bauder technical director Nigel Blacklock.  “Our Roof Survey Reports and specifications will clearly identify the torch-free zones on individual schematic roof plans with boundary lines that our approved contractor can refer to for the correct combination of membranes to deliver the torch-free requirements when submitting a tender document.  Our torch-free information will combine with the assessments completed by others in the project team in an alignment of responsibilities to identify and communicate potential risks.”

Bauder’s responsibility is evident, and its full support of the NFRC initiative has been demonstrated with a series of national events to promote the ‘Safe2Torch’ guidelines to its network of approved roofing contractors, engaging them in the practicalities of torch-free detailing and encouraging them to adhere and register as members to the NFRC’s compliance criteria.

The NFRC’s initiative is clearly the way forward and a speedy implementation by all will ensure safe roofing solutions become the mainstay of the construction industry.