High-rise build­ings the fo­cus for fire ser­vice

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

CON­TIN­UED in­spec­tions of high-rise build­ings and im­prov­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion at the scene of a blaze are among the key fo­cuses for the county’s fire ser­vice, in light of last year’s Gren­fell Tower tragedy.

Head of de­liv­ery at Bucks Fire and Res­cue, Neil Bous­tred, last week up­dated Bucks County Coun­cil on what ac­tion has been taken by the ser­vice fol­low­ing the ma­jor fire at the west Lon­don tower block, which caused the death of 72 peo­ple in June last year.

While the in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the hor­rific blaze is still on­go­ing, Mr Bous­tred told coun­cil­lors on Septem­ber 20 that teams are work­ing to fa­mil­iarise them­selves with tall build­ings in the county, so they know ex­actly what to do if a ma­jor in­ci­dent oc­curs.

He added “very tight” com­mu­ni­ca­tion has been put in place at Thames Val­ley Fire Con­trol, which han­dles emer­gency calls, to en­sure peo­ple in­side a burn­ing build­ing are given ap­pro­pri­ate in­struc­tions.

Mr Bous­tred said: “One of the im­me­di­ate lessons for us was to make sure our con­trol and in­ci­dent com­man­der has got a very open com­mu­ni­ca­tion route.

“Be­cause what we found from Gren­fell was that con­trol was still giv­ing very much the re­sponse that they had been told to give, which was to stay put, when there was per­haps some­thing slightly dif­fer­ent de­vel­op­ing at the scene.

“We have put in place very tight com­mu­ni­ca­tion, so if an in­ci­dent com­man­der or an in­ci­dent starts to de­velop, we can make sure con­trol are sub­se­quently sup­port­ing that when they get other calls com­ing in from res­i­dents within in the block.”

Bucks Fire and Res­cue are await­ing the out­comes of the cur­rent in­quiry to see if any fur­ther changes need to be made.

Teams are also go­ing out into the com­mu­nity to en­gage with res­i­dents and urge them to con­tact the fire ser­vice if they have any ques­tions or con­cerns.

Mr Bous­tred added: “We have been go­ing out still to en­sure we are do­ing joint in­spec­tions of our high rise premises.

“This isn’t just from a le­gal per­spec­tive, but to make sure our crews are ex­tremely fa­mil­iar with those sites and know ex­actly how to re­spond if they need to, but also to knock on doors and re­as­sure res­i­dents and to make sure they know they have ac­cess to the ser­vices if they have any other en­quiries.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.