Assistant Editor, Informa

December 6, 2023


Lithium-Ion batteries. A guide to the fire risk that isn’t going away but can be managed

IFSEC Insider’s most-read in fire safety: 2023 edition

It’s been another busy year for the fire safety industry, with higher risk building registration and the new Building Safety Regulator under reforms of the Building Safety Act. Designed to provide greater accountability and management of higher-risk buildings, the Building Safety Act 2022 mandated two new roles for managing building safety – Accountable Persons and Principal Accountable Persons. 

FIREX also returned to ExCel this year, covering the latest in the sector including Virtual Reality training, legislation updates and resident experiences of the building safety crisis among others.

Here we reveal the top stories that IFSEC Insider readers engaged with throughout the year! For the full articles, simply click on the linked title for each.

10. Fire safety concerns raised over Bibby Stockholm – Five improvements required include escape routes, ventilation and firestopping

In September, news of the fire safety challenges around the Bibby Stockholm barge, moored at Portland Port in Dorset and housing over 500 asylum seekers, hit headlines.

AddleshawGoddard-FIREX-BuildingSafety-20239. Changes to building regulations and fire safety: An overview

Speaking at FIREX 2023 in May, Natalie Sellar and Adrian Mansbridge of law firm Addleshaw Goddard outlined how the Fire Safety Act (FSA) and the Building Safety Act (BSA) will fundamentally change the regulatory landscape.

8. Enhanced duties of responsible persons under the Fire Safety Order: An overview

In September, the government published new guidance on the enhanced duties of responsible persons under amendments made to the Fire Safety Order by the Building Safety Act.

7. HSE publishes fire safety guidance for building planning stage

In August, Ron Alalouff provided on overview of the advice on the fire safety matters that should be considered by local planning authorities, applicants and other technical specialists involved in high rise residential and educational accommodation buildings at the planning stage, which had been published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

6. The hazards of Lithium-ion batteries on construction sites

Speaking at the High Rise Construction Fire Safety Conference held alongside FIREX in May, Matthew Pearce and Andy Lack from Skanska outlined the hazards of Lithium-ion batteries on construction sites.

5. E-bike battery found to be cause of fire in Coventry apartment block

In September, around 50 firefighters were called to respond to a flat fire on the 11th floor of a high-rise in Coventry caused by an e-bike battery setting alight.

4. BRE investigates causes and consequences of lithium-ion battery fires in new research

Also in September, and in collaboration with Electrical Safety First, the Building Research Establishment (BRE) fire safety research team has carried out tests into lithium-ion battery fires – the dangers of which are being increasingly well documented.

3. Six companies charged with fire safety offences for blaze which destroyed Cheshire retirement village

In August, Ron Alalouff reported on a highly complex case, where six companies were charged with offences under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 following a fire which destroyed a retirement village in 2019.

2. Lithium-Ion battery fire safety – Your questions answered

Following from the popular webinar, ‘Is our reliance on Lithium-ion batteries safe or sustainable’ IFSEC Insider ran in early October, we compiled a list of popular questions asked during the session, answered by presenter, Matt Humby from Firechief.

1. Luton Airport vehicle fire causes ‘structural collapse’ of car park

The top story of the year came in October, where London’s Luton Airport suspended all flights after a multi-storey car park collapsed as a result of a vehicle fire.

Top resources – Available to download or watch on-demand!

2023 Fire Safety eBook – Grab your free copy!

Download the Fire Safety in 2023 eBook, keeping you up to date with the biggest news and prosecution stories from around the industry. Chapters include important updates such as the Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 and an overview of the new British Standard for the digital management of fire safety information.

Plus, we explore the growing risks of lithium-ion battery fires and hear from experts in disability evacuation and social housing.


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