£10 million fire safety boost for tower blocks in Brent

A range of fire safety improvements, such as sprinklers, smoke detectors and fire alarms, is set to be rolled out in high-rise tower blocks in Brent after a multi-million pound package was backed by councillors.

£10 million has been earmarked for a package of enhanced fire safety measures for high rise blocks following a vote of Brent’s Full Council.

While none of Brent Council’s 37 high-rise blocks have been identified as having the sane cladding as Grenfell, and are all, say the Council, are fire risk compliant, the cash boost has been agreed to ensure that Brent is “among the very best” for fire safety in high rises.

Cllr Muhammed Butt, Leader of Brent Council, said: “Grenfell changed everything. When it comes to fire safety, ‘good enough’ is no longer good enough.

“Here in Brent we have 37 high rise blocks and they’re all fire risk compliant. But we also have lots of people asking whether those rules and regulations are actually up to standard, and who can blame them? So we’ve found the money to go above and beyond what’s required, to ensure that residents are safe – and feel safe – in their homes.

Brent Council is responsible for approximately 9,500 council tenants and 3,000 leaseholders’ homes in the borough, which are currently managed by an Arm’s Length Management Organisation – Brent Housing Partnership (BHP).

The £10 million is in addition to the almost £10 million which has already been invested in fire safety works – such as fire doors, fire detection systems, lighting and signs – in Brent blocks since 2012.

While no council block in Brent has used the Aluminium Composite Material (ACM), which has been the subject of recent Government tests, a number of blocks run by registered housing providers in Brent have. The London Fire Brigade has visited these blocks and advised that evacuation of these blocks is not necessary due to the standard of fire safety measures in place in the blocks, all of which are new-builds and not retro-fitted properties.

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