Fire safety campaign for high-rise domestic properties
The tower block fire at Grenfell Tower in west London earlier this year was a devastating tragedy. We never want a tragic event like this to happen anywhere and hope that lessons can be learned from the public inquiry to prevent such loss of life again.
Following the incident at Grenfell, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) worked together with local councils, housing associations and key partners to prioritise an additional 1,200 home fire safety visits, where they offered advice to tenants and residents around how to keep safe in the event of a fire.
Over 900 additional operational intelligence and assurance visits were also carried out by SFRS to high-rise premises where communal facilities, such as stairwells, were checked for the purposes of firefighting and firefighter safety. These visits are carried out on a quarterly basis.
Since Grenfell, the SFRS has visited every high-rise domestic premise in Scotland, held drop-in sessions to answer any concerns from tenants and residents, distributed a multi-storey fire safety leaflet and has included high-rise fire safety information and advice on its website.
Ministerial Working Group on Building and Fire Safety
In light of the Grenfell tragedy, the Scottish Government acted quickly, setting up a Ministerial Working Group (MWG) to review Scotland’s building and fire safety regulatory frameworks. One of the key priorities identified by the MWG in its work programme was to launch a fire safety campaign for high-rise domestic properties.
As well as promoting key information about what to do in the event of a fire, and how to stay safe, the fire safety campaign for high-rise domestic buildings will provide reassurance that the highest standards of building and fire safety are in place across Scotland and that living in high-rise flats is safe.
This campaign, which has been developed with key partners and tenants will see the launch of a high-rise fire safety toolkit containing a range of information and resources for local authorities, housing providers and landlords to communicate to local tenants and residents who live in high rise premises.
Minister for Community Safety & Legal Affairs, Ms Ewing said:
“I cannot express my gratitude enough for the joint work between SFRS, local authorities, housing providers and other key partners to support and reassure the public of the safety of Scotland’s buildings following Grenfell. We will continue this partnership to ensure collectively that we are doing our utmost that those who live in high-rise blocks have peace of mind.
“Tenants and residents living in high-rise flats in Scotland should feel safe where they live and this high-rise fire safety campaign, initiated by the Ministerial Working Group, will reiterate key messages on what to do in the event of a fire and where to go to get fire safety help and advice.
The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service places great importance on working with households and partners to help reduce the incidents of fires in people’s homes.
Assistant Chief Officer David McGown, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, said:
“We are here to help protect and support local communities and residents in Scotland to stay safe. Since the Grenfell Tower tragedy, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has been proactively visiting high-rise accommodation across Scotland to carry out checks and provide fire safety information to tenants and residents.
“It’s of vital importance that people know exactly what to do in the event of a fire and that as far as possible, people put measures in place in their own homes to prevent a fire in the first place.”
Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Community Safety Leaflets