Fire safety: “Don’t lock our fire escapes!”

We are very concerned that Camden Council may lock the fire escapes on the roof because of concerns about safety.

We asked you to email our local councillors and the cabinet member for housing, Meric Apak, to urge them not to lock the fire escape doors on the roofs and to improve the safety of the walkways between blocks. Lots of you did email and we received a very positive response and suggested ways forward from both Meric and local councillor, Oliver Lewis.

Here’s why we think this issue is important. Camden Council’s last Safety Review concluded that the fire doors leading to the roofs should be locked because they were worried about people’s safety on the roofs. We believe that this decision breaks fire regulations because buildings of this height should have two exits. Our flats are not ‘sealed units’ and therefore the Council’s advice is to evacuate in the event of fire rather than remain in flats. We therefore must have two escape routes.

We provided a SAMPLE LETTER for you to adapt.

After our public meeting last year, and our continuing consultations with Camden Council, we are pleased that they are taking forward the following fire safety measures:

  • ensuring that all flat doors meet the ’30 minute’ fire safety standard – at no cost to tenants or leaseholders
  • installing hard-wired smoke alarms in the communal areas of all blocks
  • checking the wiring and fuse boxes of all tenants. Leaseholders are encouraged please to get their own wiring checked.

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