Council Housing Repairs

Fire safety

Our Fire Safety Policy

  • applies to everyone living or working in Council buildings, including tenants, leaseholders, visitors, staff, and contractors
  • follows all relevant fire safety laws and regulations
  • outlines the Council’s responsibilities as a landlord and our approach to identifying, managing, and reducing the risks associated with fire in Council-owned homes

Managing fire safety

The Council is responsible for making sure your home is safe by checking that communal areas meet fire safety standards. These checks focus on communal areas and do not include the interiors of individual flats, houses, or bungalows.

Fire safety is assessed in the following ways:

  • we will ensure that all new buildings meet fire safety regulations
  • before buying an existing building, we’ll carry out a fire risk assessment and ensure that it meets fire safety rules
  • we regularly complete fire risk assessments. This is a review of a building to assess its fire risk and make recommendations to make it safer
  • we regularly assess fire risk in blocks of flats with communal areas to find and fix any problems

Maintenance of fire safety equipment

We regularly check and maintain fire safety equipment in Council-owned properties to ensure it works correctly and will keep you safe

  • fire doors in all Council and leaseholder flats with a communal area will be checked every 3 or 12 months depending on location
  • sprinklers and smoke detection systems in communal areas in high-risk blocks will be checked every 6 months
  • emergency escape lighting and fire alarm systems in communal areas in high-risk blocks will be checked every week
  • firefighting equipment and lifts in high rise blocks and complexes, and in neighbourhood centres will be checked every 12 months

Keeping communal areas safe

Residents can place a limited number of approved items, such as pictures, paintings, ornaments, and plants, in communal areas.  These items must be fire-resistant and must not cause an obstruction by blocking escape routes or hallways.

Items not allowed include rugs, Christmas decorations, bicycles, flammable items, refuse storage, charging electrical items, and footwear left outside doors.

Please ask your Area Housing Officer for approval before putting anything in a communal area.

Your responsibilities

  • keep your home fire safe.  Do not do anything that could start a fire in your home or communal areas
  • keep shared areas clear.  Do not leave any belongings in hallways, stairwells or near exits.  These can block escape routes or cause a trip hazard if there is a fire
  • do not keep mobility scooters in shared areas
  • do not leave rubbish or bulky items for disposal in shared areas, even if you are moving out
  • do not smoke in shared areas
  • do not keep anything flammable, such as petrol or gas bottles, inside your home or communal areas

What to do if there is a fire

If there is a fire in your flat, please leave immediately using the safest route, call 999, and inform others in your block if possible. Do not go into a burning building.

If the fire is in another property or within your communal area, we encourage you to remain in your property with the door closed and call 999.

We’ll share information on escape plans, fire safety tips and advise you the best way to contact emergency services. We’ll share this information with new tenants, and display this in your communal areas.

We can tailor any of the documents listed above to suit your communication needs. We can share things in braille, large print, audio, or in different languages.

If you have a disability that affects how you might respond in a fire, such as a hearing impairment or mobility issues, please get in touch. We will make sure you get the right support, including special equipment if needed.