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High rise buildings in Kent and Medway

Between now and the end of 2021, Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) will be contacting the owner or the ‘responsible person’ for every high rise building in the county to arrange a date for us to carry out an on-site fire safety inspection. Owners or the responsible person will also be asked to complete a pre-inspection questionnaire before the visit.

Why is this happening?

Following the Grenfell fire in June 2017 and other high profile incidents, the government launched an initial Building Risk Review. This was carried out by fire and rescue services around the country and looked at providing short term advice and measures for high rise residential buildings with aluminium composite material cladding

In 2019 the government established the Fire Protection Board (FPB) chaired by the National Fire Chiefs Council. This board is now overseeing a Building Risk Review Programme which requires all high rise residential buildings to be inspected or reviewed by the end of 2021.

What will happen?

Every residential high rise building owner or ‘responsible person’ in Kent and Medway will receive a letter from KFRS.

The letter will explain why we need to visit your building and will ask you to provide some information about your building in advance, such as:

  • the number of storeys and staircases
  • if there are balconies or a basement
  • the evacuation strategy
  • if you can provide any details of the make-up of the building’s external wall system, for example the type of cladding or insulation
  • if there is a fire suppression system
  • if there is a gas supply

Once you have provided this information to us, we will contact you and arrange to visit and inspect your building and conduct a fire safety inspection.

The purpose of the audit will be to assess the building for:

  • factors that may impact on fire safety
  • to identify actions that you as the responsible person may need to take
  • to advise and assist you where possible.

The results of our inspection and information on factors impacting fire safety in your building will be reported to the Fire Protection Board (FPB). This information will help to inform the government of the various problems that may exist in high rise residential buildings.

What if you find a problem with my building?

Depending on the results of our inspection, we might provide you with a schedule of works that you will need to undertake to rectify any problems found.

If there are multiple problems, you may be issued with a notice that sets out what work needs to be done and a time limit.

In the rare event that we found there was immediate risk to life, we might issue a prohibition notice. 

I would like more information

Please see our ‘High rise further information’ page

I need some help and advice

Kent Fire and Rescue Service’s business safety helpline is here to give you free, friendly advice about making your business or regulated building complaint with fire safety regulations.

Call us on 01622 212 442 or email highriseenquiries@kent.fire-uk.org

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