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Sprinklers in tower blocks - statement

Islington Council is actively looking into the effectiveness of fitting sprinklers in the borough’s council tower blocks.

Cllr Diarmaid Ward, Islington Council’s executive member for housing and development, said: “Our residents’ safety is our top priority, and we will do whatever it takes to keep people safe in our estates.

“Islington Council is actively looking at whether it is possible to retrofit sprinklers in our tower blocks. We are also trying to understand the cost of fitting sprinklers, and how effective they would be in improving safety.

Cllr Ward added: “We believe the Government should pledge funding to pay for fire safety work, to make sure the price of fire safety isn't cuts to other vital local services and projects."

The council has 123 buildings fitted with dry risers, which supply water within buildings for fire-fighting.  These are inspected and tested regularly.

Two dry risers are being converted to wet risers, which are permanently charged with water for fire-fighting, for Islington’s two tallest council housing buildings, Michael Cliffe House and Peregrine House.

Currently most council blocks in Islington do not have sprinkler systems fitted, though sprinkler systems have been installed in some properties of particularly vulnerable residents.

As a landlord, the council is guided by building regulations and advice from government departments on sprinklers. Current building regulations do not require the retro-fitting of sprinklers during refurbishment or other building works.

The council will continue to follow advice from Government Building Control bodies as it reviews its approach to sprinkler systems.

 

For further information please contact:
Chris Roe, Senior Media Officer
Tel: 020 7527 8751 
Mob/out of hours: 07769 163303 
Email: chris.roe@islington.gov.uk 
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