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Fire Service Access Requirements

Vehicle access route specification

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All new housing developments and commercial developments must take into account the need for permanent and unobstructed access for firefighting appliances.  Where a high reach appliance access is required (refer to Approved Document B - Volume 2, table 19 on page 108) the siting of ornamental structures such as flower beds, must take account not only of the access requirements of fire appliances, but must take into account the working space requirements of aerial appliances. 

Consultation must take place with the Fire Authority during the early planning stages of any development or event to ensure adequate access.

Width and turning requirements

Table 1

Access requirements

Appliance type

Pump

High Reach

Minimum width of road between kerbs

3.7m

3.7m

Minimum width of gateways  

3.1m

3.1m

Minimum turning circle between kerbs

16.8m

26.0m

Minimum turning circle between walls

19.2m

29.0m

Minimum clearance height

3.7m

4.0m

 

Where access is provided to an elevation for high reach appliances, overhead obstructions such as cables and branches that would interfere with the use of ladders etc. should be avoided.

Weight requirements of hard standings

A vehicle access route may be a road, bridge or other route which, including any manhole covers and the like should meet the standards in Tables 2. 

Table 2

Access requirements

Appliance type

Pump

High Reach

Minimum carrying capacity

12.5 tonnes

26.0 tonnes

 

Domestic Dwelling Houses

There should be vehicle access for a pumping appliance to within 45m of all points within the dwelling house.  Every elevation to which vehicle access is provided should have a suitable door, not less than 750mm wide, giving access to the interior of the building.

Flats or Maisonettes

There should be vehicle access for a pumping appliance to blocks of flats or maisonettes to within 45m of all points within each dwelling (some buildings may be fitted with a fire mains to assist with compliance, therefore will require vehicle access to within 18m of the fire mains inlet).

Other Buildings

The access requirements for other buildings (commercial buildings) will depend upon the total floor area and the height (refer to Approved Document B Volume 2, table 19 and on page 108) and if the building is fitted with a fire mains (see Approved Document B - Volume 2, sections 16.2, 16.6 and 16.7).

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