London

London high-rise residents 'lack escape plans'

  • 28 March 2014
  • From the section London

About 760,000 people living in London's high-rise flats are at risk in fires because they do not have an escape plan, a report has found.

London Fire Brigade (LFB) said 50% of residents would leave their home if a fire was somewhere else in the block, even though that can be more dangerous.

It has launched a new website www.knowtheplan.co.uk, to give tenants and landlords practical information.

The campaign is in response to a 2009 tower block fire which left six dead.

'Hold back flames'

The Lakanal House fire in Camberwell, south London, led to a coroner making several recommendations including increasing public awareness of fire safety.

London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson said: "Flats and maisonettes are built to give you some protection from fire - a minimum of 30 minutes and up to 60.

"Walls, floors and doors will hold back flames and smoke for a time."

He added that all residents should be aware of the plan and stay in the flat "unless heat or smoke is affecting you."

The survey carried out by YouGov on behalf of LFB questioned 2,899 adult Londoners and found that 60% do not have a fire escape plan and 50% would get out of their flat even if the fire was somewhere else in the block.

Across the capital that could equate to 760,000 having no fire escape plan, the study claims.

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