External Wall Systems requirement (EWS1)

Clarification from Fire Safety Consultant, Airey Miller on the current guidance and whether an EWS1 is required or not


The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) guidance currently states that all buildings of four storeys or higher require EWS1 checks if clad in high-pressure laminate, aluminium composite material, or other metal composite cladding.

To read more please visit the External Wall Systems update available here

RAG Assessment (0 Assessment)


We have completed the Stage 0 assessment, often referred to as a ‘RAG’ assessment (red/amber/green).


We can confirm from our initial findings that a ‘waking watch’ cover has not been recommended for any of our properties, which is implemented when there is a high risk of failure should a fire occur.


The results are available here Stage 0 RAG Assessment Results, which is password protected. If you have any specific queries about what each part of the assessment means, please review our RAG Ratings explained RAG Ratings Explained


Asset Survey (Stage 1)


An asset survey is the next stage following Stage 0 assessments. This includes:


  • Examining all property information.


  • Undertaking a visual inspection and full drone survey.


  • Identify areas for potential inspection to satisfy the EWS1 assessor (Fire Engineer).


  • Prepare a report together with recommendations to undertake necessary invasive surveys to secure the EWS1 form.


We explained in our last update that we would base our programme on priority based on risk. We have completed all Stage 1 surveys for all buildings over and under 18 metres, where required to do so, following the RAG assessment recommendations.  


We’re aiming to review all Stage 1 reports by the end of March 2022. We will then provide an update to you and make it accessible. This timeline is based on the number of blocks that require Stage 1 asset surveys and our ability to turn these around whilst prioritising building safety.


Invasive Survey (Stage 2)


The invasive survey will be undertaken on a priority basis, subject to the findings at Stage 1. This could include:


  • Intrusive opening up of the building and recording satisfactory areas.


  • Fire Engineer to sign off EWS1 form.


  • Stage 2 report issued with recommendations, cost estimates, requirements, and cost estimates for urgent remedial/temporary/safety work.


Remedial Works (Stage 3)


Remedial works will be undertaken on a priority basis, subject to the findings at Stage 2. This could include:


  • Liaise with the builder where potential liability is identified.


  • Apply for government funding.


  • Carrying out remedial works as recommended.


  • Sign off from Fire Engineer.


  • Reissue updated EWS1 from.


We are currently reviewing buildings over 18m that need to be escalated to Stage 3. We will be contacting leaseholders as necessary to advise on any cost implications of any of the above stages of work. We are keeping abreast of the latest government advice as part of this process.