Saudi to get its first façade and fire testing laboratory

Saudi to get its first façade and fire testing laboratory
UL and GCC Electrical Test Labs have inked an agreement to build a fire safety centre in Saudi's Damman, the first of its king in Saudi Arabia [representational image].
Published: 24 February 2019 - 8 a.m.
By: Oscar Rousseau

A research centre in Dammam that could make façades more fireproof – and thus help save lives – will be built by UL and GCC Labs.

UL, a US firm that gives products a safety certification, under its memorandum of understanding with GCC Labs, will help to raise fire safety standards in Saudi Arabia.

The façade and fire testing laboratory in Dammam – the first to the built in the kingdom – will provide services for the Middle East and North Africa, such as training.

UL and GCC Labs formed a joint venture in 2017 to bolster the Middle East’s renewable energy infrastructure and have since played a prominent role in updating certification requirements for clean power. Today, the two companies have shifted the focus onto fire safety in Saudi Arabia.

Chief executive officer of GCC Labs, Saleh Al Amri, said the lab will help to raise fire safety standards by driving through improvements in façade testing.

“This new collaboration aims to improve fire safety testing and certification, which will help ensure the safety of all buildings in the future,” he said.

Vice president and general manager of UL Middle East, Hamid Syed, said the agreement could help to improve the quality of cladding used for residential and commercial buildings.

“[It will] improve the façade fire-testing market by significantly increasing both the capacity and the quality of cladding and building systems,” he said.

Neither company has said when the laboratory will be built, how much it will cost, or when it is due to open.



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