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Converted Garage = Fire Building Regs

Harkon321

Prominent Member
Just had a visit from an Architect regarding a planned extension. This included a room (4m x 4.5m) directly off the kitchen diner as a dedicated cinema room. One door and no windows. The chap thinks that to pass building regs I'd need an additional method of escape - i.e. a window.

Anyone know if this is correct? Lots of people on here convert garages to similar spaces with no windows and one point of access. Presumably some of you needed building control due to a change of use? Anyone else come across this?
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
I'm no expert but I believe he is correct. It's defined an an "inner room" which means it's only accessed from 1 room called the access room. A suitable escape window is an acceptable solution, you could always out opaque film on the glass I suppose

Inner room definition - Designing Buildings Wiki
 

Harkon321

Prominent Member
Building Regs I've found state:

Capture.JPG



Although I don't know what reasonable is...
 

Harkon321

Prominent Member
I'm no expert but I believe he is correct. It's defined an an "inner room" which means it's only accessed from 1 room called the access room. A suitable escape window is an acceptable solution, you could always out opaque film on the glass I suppose

Inner room definition - Designing Buildings Wiki

Ok, So yea the fact that it's a kitchen is the problem:

A room accessed only via an inner room (an inner-inner room) may be acceptable if it complies with the above, not more than one door separates the room from an interlinked smoke alarm and none of the access rooms is a kitchen.

Off the record he suggested that it would be up to me that the window was unobstructed. So I could fill with insulation, plasterboard over the top and maintain no light and no issues with sound proofing. I'd likely run linked fire alarms anyway, but deep down I'm also thinking it's there for a reason. If smoke alarm didn't work for whatever I guess I would be screwed if there was a kitchen fire - I wouldn't hear it in there for sure.
 

Seriously Ltd

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
Having a room with no alternate means of escape within it and without a door opening directly into a hallway but another room (room within a room) will require a window that can be used as an escape route. Further more a kitchen is classed as a high risk room and cannot be used as a means of escape.

You will also need interlinked smoke detection for early warning with a smoke detector and audible warning within the cinema room.

Building Regs Approved Document B will provide all the info you require.

I own SeriouslyCinema but I am also a fire fighter and qualified fire safety inspecting officer in the UK’s largest fire rescue service.
 

Harkon321

Prominent Member
Thanks for the input. Thought about it last night. The Regs are there for a reason. Most sensible choice is to plan an emergency exit door, maybe disguise it with fabric panels or whatever.

I know it’ll cause issues with the sound proofing but needs must.
 

Seriously Ltd

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
Thanks for the input. Thought about it last night. The Regs are there for a reason. Most sensible choice is to plan an emergency exit door, maybe disguise it with fabric panels or whatever.

I know it’ll cause issues with the sound proofing but needs must.
Sometimes you have to work with what you have. We’ve had to do this for clients.


I see all to often the loss of life caused by fire.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Sometimes you have to work with what you have. We’ve had to do this for clients.


I see all to often the loss of life caused by fire.

Agree. Sadly.

Safety has to be paramount. Most people that perish in a fire in domestic property are overcome by noxious gases long before the fire reaches then as they don't have a secondary means of escape or adequate warning from working smoke alarms.
 

Harkon321

Prominent Member
Have adjusted plans and will be either adding a firedoor to the garden or down the side of the house. I can make it work, just need to read up on sound proofing with regards to external doors. I guess easier than internal doors as no air gaps to contend with.
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
Have adjusted plans and will be either adding a firedoor to the garden or down the side of the house. I can make it work, just need to read up on sound proofing with regards to external doors. I guess easier than internal doors as no air gaps to contend with.

It might be worth considering an outward opening door with a hinged inwards opening section. Do it right and you'll have a secret door in effect.
 
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