Fire risk assessment for a 2-storey block of 8 flat units in Mount Pleasant, Alperton, Wembley, Middlesex.

I was asked to make a Fire Risk Assessment of the common parts comprising the hall, staircase and corridors. The assessment was made and reported. I made recommendations for improvements to the fire precautions and pointed out the main responsibilities of the nominated Responsible Person who was the Company Secretary. This assessment again highlighted the difficulty of making an assessment of the common parts when it is clear that the fire precautions within individual flats impact of the fire precautions in the common parts – it is often difficult on the day of the FRA to gain access to individual flats because they are occupied.

The significant findings were: a) a fire detection and alarm system was required according to BS 5839 Part 6, b) emergency lighting should be installed within the staircase and corridors, c) all flat entrance doors should be upgraded or replaced to possess half hour fire resistance, have smoke seals, intumescent strips and self closing devices, d) some flats had glass panels above the flat entrance door and this was a dangerous weakness in the fire compartmentation, e) ceilings in the ground floor flats were understood to be of wood fibreboard which was not acceptable and should be under drawn with fire protecting board, e.g. glass fibre reinforced plasterboard, so that half hour fire resistance is achieved (an incidental advantage is that the dangerous flame spread properties of fibreboard would be mitigated). Other constructional works were necessary.

Client: Company Secretary acting for the resident’s flat management company consisting of the eight leaseholders.