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New Apartment Building

Building Regulations Compliant Systems

Sprinklers are required to meet building regulations in certain circumstances, React 4 Group can provide our expertise and design to ensure your project complies


Building regulations are minimum standards for design, construction and alterations to virtually every building. These regulations are developed by the UK government and approved by Parliament.

In England,  the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Governments, now the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities publishes guidance called "Approved Documents" on ways to meet building regulations.

These contain:

  • General Guidance on the performance expected of materials and building work in order to comply with the building regulations 

  • Practical Examples and solutions on how to achieve compliance for some of the more common building situations.

For single dwellings with 2 storeys more than 4.5M above ground floor Level, section 2.6 of Approved document B states that a sprinkler system is to be provided throughout the dwelling, designed and installed in accordance with BS9251, where there is only one means escape route from each storey more than 7.5M above ground level. 

The biggest change to Approved Document B which was introduced in by the amendments in 2020 under section 7.4 is that a Sprinkler system is required  in blocks of flats with a top storey more than 11m above ground level (see Diagram D6.) The sprinkler system should be installed throughout the building in accordance with Appendix E of Approved Document B.

NOTE: Sprinklers should be provided within the individual flats, they do not need to be provided in the common areas such as stairs, corridors or landings when these areas are fire sterile.



Wales, like England, have a set of Building Regulations. Until recently these were shared with England, however now Wales have their own Building Regulations and set of Approved Documents to meet their own Regulations.

Regulation 37A brings in a mandatory requirement for automatic fire suppression systems in all new premises of Purpose Groups 1a, 1b, 1c, 2a and 2b constructed in Wales with the exception of hospitals, hotels, prisons, and a hostel providing temporary accommodation to those who are ordinarily resident elsewhere.

Where an automatic fire suppression systems is required or recommended it should be a system which is, designed and installed in accordance with an appropriate, fully implemented, technical standard such as BS 9251: 2014 Sprinkler systems for domestic and residential occupancies - Code of practice or an equivalent technical standard.

Therefore in Wales a Sprinkler system is required to all new residential buildings and alterations to existing buildings.



Scotland also have their own set of Building Regulations and publish technical handbooks which explain how to achieve the requirements set out in Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Standard 2.15 of the Building (Scotland) Regulations states:


Every building must be designed and constructed in such a way that, in the event of an outbreak of fire within the building, fire growth will be inhibited by the operation of an automatic fire suppression system.


Limitation: This standard applies only to a building which:

a. is an enclosed shopping centre


b. is a residential care building


c. [SSI deletes text but does not amend letters assigned to following categories]


d. forms the whole or part of a sheltered housing complex


e. is a school building other than a building forming part of an existing school or an extension to a school building where it is not reasonably practicable to install an automatic fire suppression system in that building or extension


f. is a building containing a flat or maisonette


g. is a social housing dwelling, or


h. is a shared multi-occupancy residential building.

Section 2.15 of the Technical Handbook for Domestic Dwellings states that compliance with Regulation 2.15 can be achieved in flats, social housing dwelling or shared multi-occupancy residential building by installing a sprinkler system which has been designed, installed and commissioned in accordance with BS9251:2014

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