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Partnership Celebrated During Sprinkler Week

May 24 2019

The partnership between Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, Unitas Stoke-on-Trent LTD and Stoke-on-Trent City Council is being celebrated during Sprinkler Week.

Our aim is to have sprinklers in all mid to high rise buildings in the county by 2026 and Stoke-on-Trent City Council have made a huge commitment to have these systems installed in all of their 16 blocks. It is fantastic to see the first properties in Stoke retrofitted with this life saving technology, which is just like having a firefighter in every room.

Fire Engineer Ashley Mather

The national week dedicated to fire suppression systems started on Monday, 20 May, and runs until Sunday, 26 May. The aim of the week is to highlight the life-saving benefits of sprinklers and how far they go to keep people safe in their homes.

Sprinkler systems are being installed in council high-rise apartments in Stoke-on-Trent as part of a £2.8m citywide fire safety improvement programme.

The first phase of this project has been funded by the city council and will be delivered by Unitas Stoke-on-Trent Ltd, the city council’s housing maintenance and repairs company.

This investment has seen the installation of a wet pipe fire sprinkler system throughout communal areas and apartments in a 12-storey block of flats at Seddon Court in Hanley in February.

Jessica Murtagh lives on the third floor of Seddon Court. The 39-year-old said: “I have peace of mind now that the fire sprinklers have been installed and I feel a lot more reassured knowing that everything is being done to keep my family safe in our home.”

Work to install fire sprinkler systems in Lindop Court and St Luke’s Court, two 12-storey apartment blocks in Hanley, will begin in late spring 2019. Each block will take around 20 weeks to complete.

Carmen Muir, spokesperson for Unitas, said: “This improvement will benefit the quality of life for residents and provide enhanced protection of the council’s asset. This wider approach improves the housing stock and compliments the City Centre Investment, Bucknall New Road Regeneration, City Centre Refurbishment Programme and the private sector Wellington Housing Zone.”

SFRS Fire Engineer Ashley Mather said: “Our Community Sprinkler Project has been running since 2016, but this week is a great opportunity to highlight some of the recent work that has been ongoing throughout Staffordshire.

“Our aim is to have sprinklers in all mid to high rise buildings in the county by 2026 and Stoke-on-Trent City Council have made a huge commitment to have these systems installed in all of their 16 blocks. It is fantastic to see the first properties in Stoke retrofitted with this life saving technology, which is just like having a firefighter in every room. 

“We really hope that by highlighting this project, we can encourage other organisations to do the same and even promote change to building regulations and legislation for new-build properties.

“The Service attended an incident earlier this month, when an elderly man was saved by a fire suppression system which activated after a cigarette set his clothes alight. He suffered five to ten per cent burns on his body, but he could easily have died without the sprinkler. This is why it is so important to get more of this technology in the right buildings.”

The work at Seddon Court was carried out by Stoke-on-Trent businesses Novus Property Solutions Limited and B & C Fire Engineering Limited.