Fire safety at home


We are seeing an increase in weekday fires and fires earlier in the day so firefighters are warning that common causes of fires in the home such as cookingsmokingelectrical items and heating sources could happen even more prevalent as people are spending more time indoors than usual
 
Here are our top tips for staying at home safely:
 
  • Test your smoke alarms weekly
  • Plan an escape route from your home that would be the best way to leave your home in the event of fire
  • Don’t leave elctrical devices on charge overnight 
  • Don’t leave the kitchen if you’re cooking
  • Not overloading sockets
  • Close internal doors at night
  • Taking extra care if using candles
  • Make sure any cigarettes are put out fully
  • Don’t throw cigarette ash down the rubbish chute if still glowing
  • Make sure you put your rubbish into the bin
You can find out more on the London Fire Brigade website. 

 

Fire safety on balconies

Fire risk on balconies can be increased by the use of balconies for storage of combustible materials (things that would burn in a fire). Following new advice from the London Fire Brigade we’d like you to remove anything combustible from your balcony and take extra care to make sure cigarettes or any other smoking materials are completely extinguished. 

BBQ's should not be used on balconies under any circumstances. A number of recent fires in and around London have been caused by:

  • Falling embers burning items on the ground below
  • BBQ’s being close to other flammable objects
  • Disposable barbecues being left unattended after use
  • The risks are increased by the fact that wind speeds are stronger at a greater height.
  • The position of a BBQ on a balcony and/or the layout of balconies can also affect ease of escape for building occupants.


However, barbecues are not the only potential balcony hazard. Fire pits, patio heaters and smoking all pose additional risks. 

 

 

Fire safety FAQs

What fire safety guidance is available - Stay Put evacuation guidance

If you live in a block, fire safety guidance is available in the common areas such as in corridors and stairways.

Fire Service guidance supports a “Stay Put”measure in many of our properties.  Apartments have fire detection installed which will provide early warning of any fire or smoke. Alarms will only sound in the flat affected and only those occupants will need to leave the flat, close the door and leave the building by the nearest exit.   This alarm would only be heard in the flat affected and other residents would not need to leave their flat.
 
Any building that has this strategy will have been built to withstand a fire for a certain period. If a fire were to break out in an individual flat the fire would be contained within that area as long as the front door onto the stairway/fire escape is closed. This allows the residents in the affected flat to escape and any other resident affected by smoke to leave safely.

Read more advice from London Fire Brigade.

Can we have fire extinguishers?

We don’t provide fire extinguishers in our properties where we don’t have a member of the Origin team on site. We made this decision based on London Fire Brigade advice and Statutory Guidance.  The guidance explains that fire extinguishers are for small fires, should only be used by people who are trained and if a fire was to break out in a flat the occupant may rush out to get the extinguisher to fight the fire rather than keeping their door shut to help prevent the fire spreading.

What has Origin been doing?

  • We have invested £millions in fire protection over the last few years
  • We are continuing to ensure there is a regular programme of Fire Risk Assessments for each of our blocks.
  • We have taken further steps to ensure safety by completing full expert assessments on our properties including looking at measures which prevent the spread of smoke and fire and deciding if a stay put policy is appropriate.
  • As part of this work we have been upgrading doors and closers, where required, to ensure that fire is contained and escape routes are protected.


What can you do?

Get familiar with the fire safety guidance in your block, even if you are not in a block it’s worth reading the points below.

Check the smoke alarm in your home regularly. The Fire Service suggest weekly on ‘Test It Tuesday’. For more info visit: https://www.originhousing.org.uk/media-hub/blog/april/test-it-tuesday

 Let us know if you have any concerns by contacting our Customer Resolution Team. You can do this by filling out the form below or by emailing enquiries@originhousing.org.uk 

 Invest in a fire blanket.

Check to see if your appliances have been recalled as they may be potentially dangerous.

Finally, please take a minute to make sure there is no damage to your front door. It’s a fire door so it needs to be in good condition to keep your household safe. Now is a good time to  check your door and door closer and if you notice any damage let us know by emailing enquiries@originhousing.org.uk