Mobile trades colleagues at leading Midlands landlord whg will test smoke alarms at every high-rise home that requires an internal repair or inspection, in order to further reassure customers about fire safety.
Any internal repair or inspection at high-rise homes will not be marked as completed unless colleagues test all smoke alarms in the property.
Where they are found not be working, whg will provide temporary alarms whilst they arrange for them to be permanently fixed.
The move has been supported by West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS), who whg have a strong working relationship with to ensure that all of its homes are safe.
Pardeep Raw, Fire Safety Officer from West Midlands Fire Service, said: “We fully endorse whg’s stance of regularly testing smoke alarms.
“Smoke alarms have saved lives in the past by giving people audible early warning of fire, which could potentially prove vital. However, such alarms can only be effective if they are regularly serviced and maintained.
“You should have working smoke alarms fitted on every level of your home. They give you vital time to ‘get out, stay out and call 999’ in the event of a fire.”
It also comes in response to a number of fire safety measures that whg have already implemented in its high-rise buildings since the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower.
Following the incident, whg’s Fire Risk Assessment (FRA) competent surveyors visited each of whg’s 17 high-rise buildings. Meetings were also held by whg and WMFS with customers of high-rise homes.
whg can confirm that its high-rise buildings conform to strict fire safety standards. Where external thermal wrap is used in our high-rise buildings, it is fire resistant and complies with building regulation requirements for fire protection. The external thermal wrap used in any of whg’s high-rise buildings is of a mineral material, which is different to the external thermal wrap used at Grenfell Tower, so there has not been a requirement to test this.
Each building is also covered by 24/7 CCTV, meaning that if a fire is to break out, colleagues in whg’s CCTV control room will be able to call 999 immediately.
Nigel Harris, whg’s Director of Home Maintenance Services, said: “All of whg’s high-rise homes have been confirmed as safe to live in but we understand that our customers may have concerns following the tragic incident at Grenfell Tower.
“The safety of our customers is our number one priority at all times so we are taking this step to further ensure that they are safe in their homes in the unlikely event of a fire.”
whg is also reminding customers of all of its 20,000 homes to check their smoke alarms regularly. It takes just a few seconds and a working smoke alarm gives vital time for the fire service to attend after calling 999, if a fire breaks out.
In our video below, whg colleague Sarb Singh explains the simple steps to test your smoke alarm.