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2020 / 2021 Edition

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British Precast uncovers unverified imports

Seating rings

Trade association highlights concerns about quality and performance of key concrete drainage products

BRITISH Precast, the trade association for precast concrete manufacturers and members of the supply chain, says it has discovered that a range of imported precast concrete drainage products, such as manhole rings, manhole covers, seating rings, corbels and gully raisers, are being placed in the UK market without visible proof of third-party verification or assessment of conformity to relevant European and British standards.

As a result, customers can have no confidence in the performance of such products, says the association, adding that third-party verification systems are crucial to the industry as they ensure a product’s quality, durability and safe performance in service.

British Precast says a number of UK industry specifications require specific precast drainage products to conform to relevant provisions of British Standards, such as BS 5911-3, and this can only be assured through third-party certification such as BSI’s Kitemark scheme.

The association adds that precast concrete elements and products manufactured to harmonized European Standards with an Assessment and Verification of Constancy of Performance (AVCP) level 2+ legally require a Declaration of Performance (DoP) with details of the assessment body and assessment certificates available. Such third-party certification, it says, is vital for assuring that products supplied are safe for their intended use.

Colin Nessfield, technical manager at British Precast, said: ‘Customers and others in the product supply chain have a responsibility to ensure that the precast drainage products they purchase have the necessary third-party assessments and certification, which is the minimum required by the Construction Products Regulation (CPR).

‘Ignoring these requirements plays into the narrative that elements of the construction industry are still unconcerned about product safety, quality and client satisfaction,’ said Mr Nessfield.

  • Image: Properly verified precast drainage products with CE Mark to EN 1917 and Kitemark for BS 5911-3. Photo: Elite Precast Concrete

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