The Government introduced a Bill (‘the Bill’) on 19th March 2020 with the intent to improve safety in buildings in England and Wales following action already taken to try and ensure people feel safe in their homes, following Phase 1 of the Grenville Tower Enquiry.
Suki Randhawa of Kangs Solicitors outlines the position.
The Intent | Kangs Fire Safety Advisory Team
The Bill will amend the Fire Safety Order 2005 (‘the FSO’) to:
- clarify the responsible person or duty holder for multi occupied, residential building who must manage and reduce the risk of fire for:
- the structure and external walls of the building, including cladding, balconies and windows.
- entrance doors to individual flats that open into common parts.
- empower fire and rescue services to take enforcement action and hold building holders to account if they are not compliant.
- provide a foundation for secondary legislation to take forward further recommendations from the Grenville Tower Enquiry. Whilst the Bill relates to building owners and managers of a high rise and multi occupied residential building, it also gives the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government the power to amend the list of qualifying premises falling within the scope of the FSO.
- require building owners and managers of high rise and multi residential buildings to:
- carry out regular inspections of lifts and to report the results to the local fire and rescue services.
- ensure evacuation plans are reviewed and regularly updated and that personal evacuation plans are in place for residents whose ability to evacuate maybe compromised.
- ensure fire safety instructions are provided for residents in a form that they can reasonably be expected to understand.
- ensure individual flat entrance doors, where the external walls of the building have unsafe cladding, comply with current standards.
The Minister for Security, James Brokenshire, commented that this:
‘Bill will help bring about meaningful change to improving build safety.’
How Can We Assist? | Kangs Health & Fire Safety Solicitors
Our specialist solicitors provide advice and assistance throughout the entire criminal process from the initial intervention by the relevant body through to enforcement, interview under caution and ultimately defence of any ensuring criminal prosecution.
The Courts impose severe financial penalties in recognition of the seriousness of individuals and companies flouting the Fire Safety Regulations.
Who Can I Contact For Help? | Kangs National Criminal Defence Solicitors.
Please feel free to contact our team through any of the solicitors named below who will be happy to provide you with some initial advice and assistance.