Warning over high-rise fire plans

31 Mar 2014

A lack of fire escape plans in high-rise flats is putting hundreds of thousands of people at risk, according to the London Fire Brigade.

It claims that a half of all residents in high-rises would abandon their homes if there was a fire elsewhere in the building and that can be more dangerous than staying put.

The brigade is starting a new campaign for proper fire plans in line with a coroner's recommendations after six people died in blaze in a Camberwell tower block in south London five years ago.

The campaign urges landlords to fulfil their fire safety requirements and encourages residents to be clear exactly what they should do if there was a fire.

Living in a flat is no more dangerous than being in a house but different fire plans should apply, according to London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson. He said high-rise properties have walls, floors and doors that are designed to provide between 30 and 60 minutes' protection from flames and smoke.

Mr Dobson said in most cases residents are safer if they stay in their flats when there is a fire somewhere else in the building, unless heat or smoke is directly affecting them.

Copyright Press Association 2014

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