ICE review to examine wider lessons from Grenfell Tower tragedy

ICE review will recommend changes to policy or practice to reduce the risk of future failures.

ICE has offered its support to Government in their inquiry
ICE has offered its support to Government in their inquiry
Peter Hansford
Peter Hansford, ICE Past President

What lessons can be learned by civil engineers following the Grenfell Tower fire? That's the question being asked of a new review requested by ICE President Professor Tim Broyd and to be led by former government chief construction advisor and ICE Past President Professor Peter Hansford.

The independent review will seek to identify and address systemic issues highlighted by the Grenfell Tower fire and will be completed by October.

While the review has a wide remit it specifically will not duplicate the government inquiry into failings at Grenfell or cover matters that are currently subject to a criminal investigation.

Professor Hansford may make recommendations for changes to policy and/or practice to reduce the risk of future failures.

Issues the review will cover:

  • Competency and capability within owners, clients and all tiers of the supply chain, including capabilities to understand and manage whole systems
  • Responsibility and accountability for safety at all stages of the assets' lifecycle
  • Inspection and quality assurance regimes during and following construction, operational management and in-service modification, refurbishment and re-fit
  • Creation, maintenance and implementation of regulation, guidance and codes & standards
  • Assessment and management of system related risks
  • Effectiveness of industry efforts to understand and apply lessons from recent catastrophic failures and the impact of procurement practice, commercial arrangements and changes to professional roles and culture on all of the above.

ICE President Professor Tim Broyd said: "The nation has been deeply shocked by the events at Grenfell Tower. ICE's aim with this review is to establish what needs to be done to mitigate the risk of a similar tragedy resulting from the failure of infrastructure assets or networks.

"As the world's premier civil engineering organisation it is right that we assess whether change is needed to how we procure, design, construct and maintain the UK's infrastructure."

Review Chairman Professor Peter Hansford said: "I am honoured to have been asked to carry out this vital review. The Grenfell Tower tragedy has quite rightly led to a period of deep reflection among civil engineers about what the failings at Grenfell highlight for practices across the construction sector.

"Inevitably the judicial inquiry and any criminal investigation may take time to complete. It is important however that the profession moves quickly to capture and implement lessons as quickly as possible."