A London Fire Brigade survey, conducted in March 2015, revealed half the residents of high-rise blocks are likely to make potentially lethal decisions in the event of a fire in their block. This is worrying when there are nearly two blazes every day in purpose-built blocks of flats in London alone.
Around 50% say they would get out of their flat even if the fire was elsewhere in the block. This can be the most dangerous thing to do unless the smoke or fire is directly affecting your home.
London Fire Brigade Deputy Commissioner Rita Dexter said: “Staying put if you know there is a fire in your building may go against your natural instincts, but if you leave your flat you could be running into danger such as choking smoke or equipment being used to fight the fire elsewhere in the block.”
Last year, fire-fighters attended 514 fires affecting communal areas – almost one a day. As well as providing fuel for fires, clutter such as baby buggies, bikes and rubbish can slow down fire-fighters trying to reach a fire and save residents.
The Brigade also emphasised that landlords are responsible for communal areas in purpose built blocks such as hallways, stairways and corridors, and the Brigade wants to see them do more to ensure they are kept clear.
Freeholders and the directors of residents’ management companies also have a duty to make a fire safety risk assessment for common areas. The Fire Safety Order (FSO) 2005 became effective in October 2006 replacing over 70 pieces of previous legislation and created clarity in this area. The Order does not apply to the individual flats.
If you’re concerned by this, we can happily make arrangements for a professional inspection for you, simply email or call us free on 0808 256 3492. For more information on Fire Risk Assessment check out our FREE downloadable Fact Sheet here https://deacon.co.ukwp-content/uploads/2016/08/6895_1_Fire-Risk-fact-sheet-1.pdf