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Thursday 6th of March 2014
The Rural and Industrial Design and Building Association (RIDBA) is warning farmers about new buildings legislation which comes into effect on 1st July 2014 whereby all steel, concrete and timber frames used in the UK will have to be CE marked.
The new regulations will have far reaching effects on the way farmers source new buildings.
In the winter of 2010-11 heavy snowfalls were experienced in several parts of the UK and more than 5000 farm buildings collapsed. Causes quoted for the collapses included the building’s age, the weight of the snow, poor overall design, poor construction and the use of substandard material.
Tony Hutchinson RIDBA secretary said “After July it will be a criminal offence to supply non CE marked frames for the construction of a building. It is therefore unlikely that insurance companies will pay up for the rebuilding of a collapsed or damaged building where the frame is not CE marked – or for damage to livestock, grain or machinery as a result of the collapse.”
The CE marking is not a quality mark but a declaration by a manufacturer that its products meet the minimum requirement of a ‘harmonised technical specification’, which generally means it is fit for purpose. When the CE marking comes into force it will require manufacturers to design a frame using the new Eurocodes and manufacturers will also have to have a quality control system in place that complies with the relevant Eurocode standards.
One way farmers can ensure any new building is correctly designed and fabricated to CE Marking standards is to engage a steel framed building manufacturer member of RIDBA. The association’s members are being helped to meet the new regulation by being given preferential access to guidance manuals and training which has markedly reduced their costs in meeting the requirements.
Mr Hutchinson added that half of the 400 frame manufacturers could go out of business and the cost of agricultural buildings is likely to rise as companies seek to recover their investment in becoming a certified fabricator.