Safety body warns on electrical services in tower blocks

Fire integrity of tower blocks must be made a priority, says safety charity, the Electrical Safety Council (ESC).

Commenting on a recent BBC report on the fire risks in London’s tower blocks, Phil Buckle, director general of the ESC said: “It’s crucial that electrical work undertaken on behalf of council landlords is rigorously checked to ensure that fire regulations have not been breached, particularly in high-density accommodation buildings where the rapid spread of fire can have devastating consequences.”

The BBC’s report uncovered a series of fire hazards in a tower block in Hounslow, west London, including holes bored through ceilings to accommodate electric cables, which would accelerate the spread of fire.

Phil Buckle said: “A building’s structural performance during a fire can be seriously compromised by inadequate fire sealing and ‘making good’ after modifications that penetrate the walls and ceilings of a building, such as the installation of electrical cables.

“Maintaining the structural fire protection in buildings and ensuring that fire regulations are met is crucial in preserving life in the event of a fire.”