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Safety glass – the why, the what and the where.

Safety glass protects people from injury caused by glass breakage. UK building regulations stipulate that safety glass must be fitted in ‘critical locations’.

Critical locations are defined as:

  1. Glazing in doors – glass which is wholly or partially within 1500 mm from floor level.

  2. Glazing adjacent to doors – windows and side-panels that are wholly or partially within 300 mm of the edge of a door and which is also wholly or partially within 1500 mm from floor level, must be safety glass.

  3. Low-level glazing – Other glazing that is wholly or partially within 800 mm from floor level.

Types of safety glass:

Laminated glass – formed by sandwiching a thin layer of plastic between two thin glass sheets. Unlike toughened glass, lamination does not make the glass more resistant to breakage – but the plastic interlayer keeps the glass bonded together even when broken. Also increases sound insulation properties. Laminated glass is more expensive than toughened glass.

Toughened glass – glass that has undergone heat treatment to dramatically increase its strength.

On breakage, toughened glass will shatter into harmless blunt pieces, while laminated glazing holds the broken pane in place. Glass panels that are less than 250 mm wide can be fitted with 6 mm annealed (standard) glass or laminated glass instead of toughened glass.

How to tell if safety glass is fitted:

Look for a small British Standards kitemark or other marking in a corner of the glass unit.

BS EN 14449 = laminated glass

BS EN 12150 = toughened glass

Choosing a window and door installer:

Deal with a competent FENSA-registered window company such as Admiral Windows Oxford, and your installation is guaranteed to comply with all the relevant legislation. To book your free no-obligation quote for new windows and doors call Admiral Windows today on 01865 788333.

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