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Huge fire at Grenfell Tower block

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hammer1
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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by hammer1 » Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:08 pm

bernicarey wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:16 am
witsd wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:58 am
Personally, I think that subconsciously encouraging untrained people to fight fires is a terrible idea, but in people's minds at the moment, they are seeing fires spreading throughout tower blocks, when 99.9% of cases that spread just doesn't happen.
Yes, the Media are hyping up people's fears and concerns, as they usually do, whilst not asking the 'unpalatable' questions.
Most people are rightly assuming that there was a problem with the external cladding wrapping the building in fire, but nobody is daring to enquire as to why the internal central staircase was so affected so quickly. There are a number of things going through my head as to what caused the rapid breach of compartmentalisation at what appears to multiple places.
The last thing that was needed was people staying behind trying to save their flat with a 9Ltr water.
I know some sort of upgraded smoke control system was installed, I learnt from my high rise course about cause and effect tests, its ok setting of a single smoke head etc to see how it works, however in a real situation when various smoke heads in different floors/zones activate all at once, what happens then?

With the smoke shaft and lift shaft possibly the chimney stack effect/piston effect could assist in spread of fire/smoke? and of course wind.
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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by hammer1 » Thu Jun 22, 2017 6:27 pm

Extract from the national guidance on block of flats;

72. External fire-spread

72.1 The external façades of blocks of flats should not provide potential for extensive firespread. When assessing existing blocks of flats, particular attention should be given to any rainscreen or other external cladding system that has been applied and to façades that have been replaced.
72.2 The use of combustible cladding materials and extensive cavities can present a risk, particularly in high-rise blocks. Restrictions are normally applied to the nature of such materials and in particular their surface spread of flame characteristics. Cavity barriers are also required in some circumstances. Assistance from specialists may be required to determine if the external surfaces of walls are satisfactory and whether there is adequate provision of cavity barriers.
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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by Messy » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:48 am

I have discovered that for at least the last two+ years, the findings of the fire risk assessment reviews for the now infamous Camden blocks (those that have been force evacuated) have highlighted fire stopping and other FS issues that are now being so hastily repaired.

Coming on top of a virtual Prohibition notice (Camden's acceptance of voluntary action plan in lieu of a prohibition notice), a prosecution and huge fine is very likely.

Who could argue with the very personable & caring leader of Camden Council when she justifies the panic evacuation of thousands of residents by saying the Council had no choice to take immediate action as they knew their tenants were at risk.

Its a shame they weren't so caring and 'immediate' when they were told by their professional risk assessors two years ago of high risk issues

I wish the media would ask the right questions and obtain copies of the FRAs. The residents should be aware they've been let down by their now 'caring' council

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by hammer1 » Mon Jun 26, 2017 9:05 pm

Good sensible article below via LinkedIn;

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/grenfell ... -phylaktou
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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by bernicarey » Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:27 am

http://camdennewjournal.com/article/som ... m-chalcots

1,000 fire doors missing across Camden Estate!!!!! :shock: :shock:


I wonder how many of there are from 'council flat purchases' which have changed their Fire Door for a UPVC door?
Can they really be missing doors on corridors and stairways?
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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by witsd » Fri Jun 30, 2017 10:09 am

hammer1 wrote:
Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:59 pm
In regards to blocks of flats Stats show In 2009-2010, of over 8,000 fires in these blocks, only 22 fires necessitated evacuation of more than five people with the assistance of the fire and rescue service.
Fine, 99.7% :D
We often think that when we have completed our study of one we know all about two, because 'two' is 'one and one.' We forget that we still have to make a study of 'and.'

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by Messy » Sat Jul 01, 2017 9:58 am

The BBC allege 'desktop study' approach when considering the fire resistance of products may be at fault.

This will be one to watch as designers, fire authorities and fire risk assessors (like me) rely on a range of certificates from third parties when developing fire safety strategies & evacuation plans. If there is a fundamental problem with desktop studies (of all types), this could be huge and put in doubt the effectiveness of fire safety arrangements in 100s of 1000s of premises across the world.

Where does this leave the entire fire safety engineering profession?????

Exova Warringtonfire - one of the UK's leading testing labs, are named by the BBC re the Grenfell study. They deny any wrongdoing

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40465399

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by EagleBeagle » Mon Jul 03, 2017 6:20 am

Not sure what the moderators view will be on this but its already been made widely public by the Action Group and the media in their reports.

Basically the Grenfell Action Group uploaded a copy of a 2012 FRA after it was given to them. It relates only to the common areas and has absolutely nothing to do with the structure or later renovation but I think it gives a good description on the internals.

Link: https://grenfellactiongroup.files.wordp ... v-2012.pdf

The assessor was revealed in the media in the past week and has acknowledged his limited role and stands over the assessments.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/ho ... 19386.html

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by Messy » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:57 am

clapclap Thanks for sharing

I haven't had time to read this FRA fully but it seems like a comprehensive document.

It does start curiously with legal advice that the customer does not need to show the FRA to anyone - even tbe fire authority. Really???

Whilst I accept that Article 22 (cooperation and coordination) requires merely the sharing of the findings and other prescribed information with neighbours, as far as I can recall the fire service can request copies of all related fire safety documents - starting withthe entire FRA

I read thru the rest of it later

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by Steb » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:28 am

Was the FRA reviewed and updated after the renovations? As I understand it, any risk assessment must be reviewed and updated if there is any change in circumstances - structual changes being a rather crucial one.

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by EagleBeagle » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:54 am

Messy wrote:
Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:57 am
clapclap Thanks for sharing

I haven't had time to read this FRA fully but it seems like a comprehensive document.

It does start curiously with legal advice that the customer does not need to show the FRA to anyone - even tbe fire authority. Really???

Whilst I accept that Article 22 (cooperation and coordination) requires merely the sharing of the findings and other prescribed information with neighbours, as far as I can recall the fire service can request copies of all related fire safety documents - starting withthe entire FRA

I read thru the rest of it later

Thanks
No problem Messy, I was hoping to see your analysis of it as you seem to be "Mr. Fire Safety" to me! :D

I agree, the legal statement at the start is a strange one. Given that's my previous background, it's very rare to see something like that in regards to it's rather choice wording. I don't think a fire authority would be long on insisting if part of it's decision required the assurance of having read the assessment. Also, his advice contradicts itself by noting that once they become aware of it's existence the fire authority has the legal right to audit it's efficacy.

From what I've read of it, it does seem quite reasonable and comprehensive. It's by no means a "cover up", and identifies short comings where they are observed.

Steb wrote:
Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:28 am
Was the FRA reviewed and updated after the renovations? As I understand it, any risk assessment must be reviewed and updated if there is any change in circumstances - structual changes being a rather crucial one.
Yes, Steb. According to the media, the assessor was responsible for FRA's both pre- and post-renovation spanning a period of 2012 to 2016 having originally been contracted in 2012 on recommendation of the TMO's Health & Safety Advisor. However, this seems to be the only one that has managed to make it's way to the residents, and thus the public.

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Re: Huge fire at tower block

Post by bernicarey » Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:34 am

Well I've just had a bit of a speed read through of the 2012 FRA and at 32 pages it seems quite comprehensive.... yet there is one glaring omission in my book.
Page 10 states:
(Note that, although the purpose of this section is to place the fire risk in context, the above approach to fire risk assessment is subjective and
for guidance only. All hazards and deficiencies identified in this report should be addressed by implementing all recommendations contained in the following action plan. The fire risk assessment should be reviewed regularly.)
That's my BOLD above.

Yet there is no 'Action Plan'.
Page 1 of the document states in bold:
The significant findings and action plan of this Fire Risk Assessment are inserted next with this document continuing on page 2.
But there is no 'Action Plan'; there's not even a management summary page of Significant Findings...just random comments in each heading.
Anything could be buried in here because as a management document, it is terribly written.
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