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Professionalism is "falling short" in the construction industry
Published:  01 November, 2010

Most of the UK construction industry have no knowledge of the Eurocodes that have replaced British Standards, according to McBains Cooper.

Eurocodes are pan-European model building codes developed by the European Committee for Standardisation, which should have been fully adopted in the UK from April 2010, when British Standard codes for construction stopped being updated.

"This is a potentially massive issue," said Paul Cowton of McBains Cooper. "Our research indicates the vast majority of construction industry professionals are unaware Eurocodes are here. Two-thirds of civil engineers feel uncomfortable with Eurocodes, and have been designing and specifying buildings to outdated British Standards since updates stopped."

"British Standards for building will be withdrawn completely in 2013, and simply aren't being updated. But as far as we can see, the vast majority of professionals in building design simply don't know about Eurocodes.

"If something goes wrong, there is huge potential for litigation, because they're not designing to current best standards or using current best practice. There is a strong potential for legal action under Duty of Care.

"This is about professionalism in the construction sector, and, frankly, it is falling apart when it comes to Eurocodes. But it is a tediously important piece of legislation.

"The EU directive states that national codes were to be withdrawn on 31 March 2010, and the BSI has confirmed they are complying with that directive, but the updating of Building Regulations to reflect this directive will not take place until 2013."