So the BBC says it has discovered documents that show Grenfell Tower’s proposed cladding was changed from Zinc to aluminium…the BBC are sensationalising this and hyping the suggestion that this caused the fire disaster at the tower because the aluminium cladding was less fire retardant than the zinc…or was it?
The BBC have given us three different versions of just how fire retardant the two claddings were…one is that the zinc cladding was more fire retardant…two, that they were in fact the same…and three no comment other than to say zinc was replaced by aluminium.
Documents show the zinc cladding originally proposed was replaced with an aluminium type, which was less fire resistant, saving nearly £300,000.
The cladding is thought to have contributed to the spread of the fire that killed at least 80 people.
Oh but hang on…..
Despite their differences, both types of cladding have the same official fire rating.
How can one be less fire resistant and yet have the same fire rating? Anyone who was going to use the panels would go by the fire rating….so they would judge there was no extra fire risk changing to aluminium…so there’s in fact no story here of ‘guilt’.
The zinc panels, if they come from the same people who make the aluminium panels, apparently ‘Reynobond’, would have a fire resistant core…
ZCM Only Available with FR Core The melting point for the titanium zinc alloy used in ZCM is 418 C (784 F). Therefore, ACM [sic…ZCM?] is only available with our “FR” fire-resistant core. This is necessary in order to pass ASTM E84 Steiner Tunnel Tests for flame spread and smoke generated. With the extra security of the FR Core, ZCM passes most common building code requirements.
What the BBC are insinuating is that the change was a piece of reckless money saving that was implemented regardless of risk…and yet that is pure supposition as they do not know the decision process nor how those who made the decision understood the fire standards….as the BBC admits the two panels have the same fire rating….how would someone making that decision know any different?
The BBC tells us, as it has for days, that the cladding has failed the recent government tests…
Police investigating the disaster have said the tower’s cladding has subsequently failed safety tests.
….but doesn’t tell us that the tests are more stringent than the ones that were necessary to pass building regulations…..which presumably the cladding did originally pass.
The BBC are being extremely irresponsible in hyping and sensationalising this story in the way it does knowing full well that its nuances, such as the fire ratings, will pass most people by, certainly those with an axe to grind, and that in such an emotive and angry atmosphere this could lead to that anger being exploited by the various hard-left groups hijacking this issue working to start riots and disturbances.