Westminster Column - Fire safety lessons from Grenfell Tower

4th August 2017

Seven weeks on from the terrible events of the Grenfell Tower fire, safety reviews continue to take place around the country. This month Shropshire MPs were briefed by Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service about the fire safety status of the six buildings in Telford which are high rise.

In the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower fire, I wrote to all Housing Associations who manage property in the Ludlow Constituency to ask them to confirm that their buildings met the relevant fire regulations, that no cladding similar to that used at Grenfell was present on their properties, and to confirm no high rise buildings were at risk.

All responses indicated that Housing Association properties meet the fire regulation standards and that the type of cladding used at Grenfell is not present in the Ludlow Constituency. Other types of cladding have been confirmed to be 'Class 0' fire resistant - offering the best fire resistant materials. I hope this provides some reassurance to those concerned about similar risks as those seen in Grenfell.

I congratulate firefighters at Clun and Ludlow Fire Stations, who raised £1,500 and £1,075 respectively through charity car washes, to support the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire last month. I popped down to chat to the Ludlow firefighters, who were all in good spirits and happy to support such a good cause.

There are of course steps we can all take in the home to protect ourselves from the risk of fire, and encouragingly, the number of fires attended by Fire and Rescue Services in England has declined some 40% from 228,383 in 2010/11 to 162,223 in 2015/16.

Smoke alarms act as an early warning system, giving time to escape in the event of a fire. Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service advise fitting at least one smoke alarm per level of your property, and testing it once a week. Free smoke alarms are available to those aged over 75, or those with long term sickness, disabilities, or physically incapable of fitting a smoke alarm. For further details, Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service can be contacted on 01743 260 200.

Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service have also been offering free Home Fire Safety Visits since 2001, in which they discuss the main causes of fire in the home, test smoke alarms, help with fire escape plans, and talk about what action to take in the event of a fire. I encourage local residents to consider taking up this opportunity to make safe your home, by calling 01743 260 260 to book an appointment.

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Advice Surgeries

All are welcome at my advice surgeries, but an appointment is recommended.

To make an appointment please telephone the constituency office on 01584 872187.
 
Friday, 20th October
54 Broad Street, Ludlow
4.30pm-6.00pm
 
Friday, 27th October
Community Hall, Low Town, Bridgnorth
3.30pm-5.00pm