When you’re specifying or purchasing a smoke vent, you’re buying a lot more than just a motorised window or dome.
The item in question is actually a life safety device and it’s important to make sure the equipment that you’re buying or specifying is up to the job.
The reason it’s important to ensure the product is properly certified is, primarily the health and safety of the people living in the building. However, it’s also important to be aware of the outcomes of not taking life safety systems seriously - it can result in you being banned from your profession, receiving large fines or, in the worst case, a jail sentence.
I’m not scaremongering, there’s no need for things to ever get to that sort of stage, but that’s why it’s important that we consider these things upfront, rather than finding a problem later down the line.
In order to look into conformance, we have to go right back to July 2013 when the Construction Products Regulation or CPR was introduced.
It introduced a mandatory requirement on all smoke control equipment manufacturers to only place products onto the UK market which comply with BS EN12101 harmonised standards.
Demonstration of compliance with the CPR involves the manufacturer issuing a Declaration of Performance (DoP) for each product.
This means that the manufacturer must appoint a Notified Body accredited to the relevant part of EN12101 to issue the manufacturer with a Certificate of Constancy of Performance.
The Certificate of Constancy of Performance will include, type testing of the product, initial inspection of the Factory Production Control, continuous surveillance, and assessment and evaluation of the Factory Production Control.
A Certificate of Constancy allows the manufacturer to issue the Declaration of Performance (DoP).
The DoP will contain information about the essential characteristics of the product. These characteristics will indicate the suitability of the product for the required function.