Have you ever been on-site and wondered what width a door should be? How deep foundations should be? How many wall ties do you need? What height should a damp proof course (DPC) be to? Is this a fire door? What depth of insulation do I need to comply with Part L of the regulations? Can I chase a party wall? What are the new Building Control Regulations (BCAR)? If you want to check the building regulations you require 3G or 4G mobile coverage and you need an internet connection to download the building regulations. Your other option is to go back to the office and check a hard copy of the regulations or check them online on your computer. This gives rise to a number of issues including:

  • decisions can’t be made until clarification with the regulations are determined;
  • delay in time spent on site and increasing costs of labour; and,
  • it is time consuming and frustrating scrolling through thousands of pages of documentation to find what is required.
It is difficult for an on-site engineer to remember the relevant regulations and to determine whether a detail complies. If you want to check a regulation, and if you are lucky enough to have 3G or 4G coverage, it can be difficult, if not impossible, to navigate a pdf on your phone to find the details you require. Eoghain Ryan and Ailish Ryan, of Ryan and Associates Consulting Engineers, felt a mobile was required which removed all of the unnecessary hassle and helped engineers, architects and surveyors on site in construction, or in the built environment, to ensure details are complying with the regulations.  It needed to be intuitive so that it could be searchable and allowed you immediate access to the required technical term, diagram or relevant table. They set about developing an app which enabled on-site searching of the regulations without mobile or WiFi coverage. Importantly, they decided it needed to be free so there would be no restrictions on its use. The app has now been launched and downloaded thousands of times in Ireland and the UK. The free app has a search facility which allows users to check out terms, diagrams or details and each individual technical guidance document is broken down into the main document and then tables and diagrams. Frequently asked questions have been included for many of the technical documents while the developers are continuously looking for experts to provide relevant questions and answers to improve the level of building and understanding in Ireland. The app provides architects, engineers, surveyors and builders with the relevant regulations in a searchable format, while on-the-go, to ensure better building. It offers construction industry professionals a platform on which to make correct decisions - leading to better quality sustainable building and improved designs which will be fully compliant. The Building Regulations IE (Ireland) App: https://appsto.re/ie/soWUcb.i https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ie.thebuildingregulations.and The Building Regulations UK App: https://appsto.re/ie/9W5lcb.i https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=uk.org.thebuildingregulations&hl=en The app has been developed by Eoghain Ryan and Ailish Ryan of Ryan and Associates Consulting Engineers. Ryan is a former assistant chief fire officer and is a chartered engineer. Ryan and Associates specialise in fire safety, accessibility and assigned certification.