Fire safety report into timber-framed buildings get responses
Proposals to tackle fire threats in timber-framed buildings in London have met with a mixed response.
The London Assembly published a report in December 2010 with 10 recommendations for improving fire safety in London’s tall and timber-framed buildings.
The assembly’s key findings include:
- There is a need to improve fire safety during the construction phase of timber-framed buildings. We call for temporary sprinklers to be installed on timber-framed sites, and for a mandatory requirement to inform the Fire Brigade of new timber-framed sites so they are better prepared to tackle fires if they occur. Partial occupation of timber-framed sites should be forbidden.
- The fire risk assessment process must be improved by ensuring the people conducting them are properly qualified for the task. We call on the DCLG to draw up mandatory minimum standards of competence for training and accrediting all assessors.
- Residents of tall buildings need better information about evacuation procedures and the way DIY modifications, like installing extra plug sockets, can compromise fire safety measures.
- The DCLG should ensure all social landlords publish a full register of fire risk assessments online; provide existing and new residents with better information about what to do in the event of a fire; and ensure that inspecting for unauthorised or damaging works are part of routine estate inspections by housing staff.
The report, which was commissioned after six people died in a tower block fire in Camberwell, south London, in July 2009, was put to a number of public and private bodies - such as the DCLG,the Health and Safety Executive and the UK Timber Frame Association - who responded in writing.
None of the recommendations received unanimous support with the DCLG accused of not responding directly to certain parts aimed directly at it.
To see a summary of the responses click on the link below.