UK Fire Safety News

Swindon Flat Fire - Woman Dies

A 32-year-old woman has died and a man has been severely injured in a fire at a flat in Swindon. Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service said it was called to Hayward Close, Abbey Meads, at 01:39 GMT where a third-floor flat was on fire.

The man, 25, was taken by air ambulance to Frenchay Hospital near Bristol with severe burns. He is said to be in a critical condition. The cause of the fire is being investigated. Wiltshire Police said officers helped to evacuate other residents from their homes. The building has been sealed off. Formal identification of the woman has yet to take place but police said they had informed her family. Witnesses said they heard shouting approximately 20 minutes before rescue services arrived. "It sounded like a woman. It's not the sort of thing that you would normally hear around here at that time of the night," said one man.The cause of the fire at Thorley Court in Abbey Meads, Swindon, is being investigated

Hertfordshire Fires near Potters Crouch

Firefighters in Hertfordshire are tackling two major fires near St Albans. A large pile of wood has been on fire at a recycling centre at Appspond Land, Potters Crouch, since about midnight on Saturday. A quantity of plastic crates is burning in the yard of a nursery at Station Road, Smallford. Smoke from the fires can be seen from a long distance away and by drivers on the nearby M1, A1(M) and A414 roads.

A Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue spokesman said a 20ft (6m) high pile of wood was on fire at Potters Crouch. She said the smoke was not hazardous but the fire was expected to burn for several more days.

Burned out motor causes hotel fire in Kidderminster

A burned-out motor was found to be the cause of a fire at a hotel in Kidderminster earlier this week. Fire fighters were called to the Mercure Hotel at 1.30pm on Monday August 6th where they discovered a blaze in the plant room at the swimming pool. According to the Express and Star newspaper, crews used a jet and a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher to bring the flames under control. Because the pool is located in a separate building away from the main hotel, there was no need to evacuate guests or staff members.

A 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment must be conducted on all commercial properties in England and Wales under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. The Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or a prison sentence of up to two years if the fire risk assessment is deemed to be carried out to an insufficient extent.

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Arrest of suspected arsonist - London hostel fire

Police have arrested a man on suspicion of arson following a deadly fire at a disused hostel in London. The blaze broke out at the building on Lower Clapton Road in Hackney in the early hours of Sunday August 5th and around 40 fire fighters were called to the scene. There were a number of people in the former Salvation Army hostel at the time, one of whom was found dead. Another man jumped from a window to escape the flames and is in a critical condition in hospital, while a male and female were rescued from the blaze and are being treated for smoke inhalation.

A joint investigation between police and the London Fire Brigade is now underway and the arrested man remains in police custody.

Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 a 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment must be conducted on all commercial properties in England and Wales. Owners of empty and derelict buildings must also comply with the legislation. Where a fire risk assessment is deemed to be carried out to an insufficient extent, the Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or a prison sentence of up to two years.

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Investigation into Fire at Bus Depot in Paignton

A joint investigation between police and local fire authorities has been launched following a fire at a bus depot in Devon last week.

The blaze broke out at Paignton bus station in the early hours of Monday July 30th, damaging three buses - a single decker and two double deckers - worth £120,000 in total. Fire fighters were able to extinguish the flames using three appliances. Devon and Cornwall Police confirmed that the fire is being treated as suspected arson and its cause is now under investigation.

Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 a 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment must be conducted on all commercial properties in England and Wales. This includes transportation terminals and interchanges, such as bus and coach stations. If the fire risk assessment is deemed to be carried out to an insufficient extent, the Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or up to two years in prison. Visit our knowledge base to read more on Preventing Arson.

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Concerns on lack of information from developers

Concerns have been raised about the lack of information being passed on from developers to building occupiers about fire safety once construction of a building is complete. The Passive Fire Protection Federation ( PFPF ) believes more must be done to raise awareness of the legal rights and responsibilities both parties have. Regulation 38 of the Building Regulations states that the person carrying out work on a new building must pass on relevant fire safety information to the occupiers of the building. Specifically these details must be given to the Responsible Person whose job it is to ensure that a 'suitable and sufficient' fire risk assessment is carried out on the property under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

The Chairman for the PFPF pointed out that Regulation 38 is not just a recommendation, but a legal requirement on building developers. "This information can greatly improve the building occupier's understanding of the safety precautions installed within a building," he remarked.

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