Two years on from the tragedy of Grenfell where 72 people died, the law still states that in England only new residential properties above 30 m in height must be fitted with sprinklers. In commercial buildings such as warehouses, only those over 20,000 sqm must have sprinklers. Last year 334 people died as a result of fires and over 80% of these are from single occupancy dwellings such as houses, flats and maisonettes. Is it not time to change the law and fit all new residential properties with sprinklers?
On the 8th June 2019 a fire in Eunice Kelly’s flat in Greater Manchester was contained before it could spread to the other 57 homes in her block. The building is run by ForHousing group which spent £5million on sprinklers in its 17 tower blocks after Grenfell. Assets director Mark Lowe said: “This single situation has made the investment worthwhile.” This is yet another example of countless numbers of lives being saved by the simple installation of a sprinkler system.
A car park at Kings Dock, close to the Echo Arena in Liverpool, went up in flames on New Year’s Eve. The final event of the Liverpool International Horse Show had to be cancelled as fire crews tackled the inferno and people were evacuated from the area. Witnesses described abandoning their vehicles and running for their lives as the fire broke out.
It was devastating watching the news coverage of the Grenfell fire disaster on 14th June 2017 and to hear that so many have lost their lives in this devastating fire our deepest sympathies go to the victims and families of this tragedy.