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CARES Alert: Unregulated reinforcement continuity systems

19 February 2021 Return to news articles

Unregulated reinforcement continuity systems entering the supply chain

CARES is investigating unregulated reinforcement continuity systems entering the construction supply chain. These systems are used as a cost-effective means of providing reinforcement continuity across concrete joints.

Unregulated continuity systems have not undergone the rigorous testing undertaken to meet CARES approved continuity system requirements. CARES has learned that these unregulated systems are being used on construction sites where project personnel are advised that the presence of CARES approved rebar means these continuity systems are approved and meet all CARES requirements.

This is untrue. The information is factually wrong, and project professionals are urged to be alert to misleading claims not supported by the appropriate Product Certification or Technical Approval.

CARES is taking urgent steps to identify false statements that are applied to materials which have not undergone the tests and assessment required to meet CARES’ continuity system Technical Approval.

If in any doubt at all please do not hesitate to contact CARES for clarification of the systems’ status.

Construction professionals who require further background can be reassured that CARES approved reinforcement continuity systems are subject to an initial structural testing programme to prove the design and conformance to the requirements of EC2 and provide information on their intended use.

CARES’ Structural Tests are full scale, in terms of bar sizes and member depths, and include several wall-to-floor slab joints subjected to vertical shear testing and bending, and several wall-to-wall joints subjected to longitudinal shear testing.

In addition to testing, the CARES approved rebar is subjected to both bend and re-bend testing and subsequent tensile testing to confirm continued compliance with the relevant requirements of BS 4449. On successful completion of these initial tests, and audit assessments against CARES Appendix TA2, the approved systems are issued with a CARES Technical Approval Document which details both the scope of use and the installation methodology.

Ongoing assessment of these systems is essential to ensure continued compliance of the required properties, Factory Production Control monitoring and selection of the correct CARES approved rebar plus ongoing control of the system component design.

Details of the seven CARES approved TA2 Continuity systems can be found on the CARES website and Technical Approval Documents are freely available to download. These systems are:

TA2 5007 RFA-TECH Startabox reinforcement continuity system

TA2 5017 Ancon Eazistrip reinforcement continuity system

TA2 5056 Invisible Connections Ferbox Reinforcement Systems

TA2 5062 Thames Reinforcement Contibar Continuity System

TA2 5070 Nevoga Plexus ® Continuity System

TA2 5072 Betomax ® Comax ® Reinforcement Systems

TA2 5075 Dywidag (DY.CO.) recostal ® RSH continuity system

The National Structural Concrete Specifications (NSCS) require continuity strip manufacturers to hold a CARES Technical Approval certificate or equivalent, unless otherwise agreed by the Contract Administrator.

Please contact CARES immediately if in any doubt about a reinforcement continuity systems’ CARES approval status.

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