High-rise tower sprinkler proves a hit

one of the country’s most senior ranking fire officers has visited a high rise tower block in Sheffield to see a new sprinkler system which could be installed across the UK.

The President of the Chief Fire Officers Association Peter Holland visited the block on Callow Mount, Gleadless Valley, after it became the first in the country to have been fitted with a water sprinkler system years after construction.

Mr Holland, who is also Chief Fire Officer of Lancashire Fire and Rescue, said: “This is an extremely impressive and cost-effective project.

“Flats such as these are already fire safe but this development will no doubt further improve residents’ safety in the unlikely event of a fire.

“What is also so impressive is that the people living here are able to remain in their flats throughout the installation process, causing them minimum disruption. I hope that we can now promote this fantastic project throughout the rest of the country.”

The project, funded by an £80,000 grant from the British Automatic Fire Sprinkler Association, comes in the wake of the fire at Lakanal House flats in Camberwell, London in 2009, where six people died. Since the tragedy, the Chief Fire Officers Association has campaigned for the greater use of sprinkler systems to help save lives. South Yorkshire’s Chief Fire Officer Jamie Courtney added: “We are delighted to be involved in such a ground-breaking and innovative project which improves both residents’ safety, and the safety of firefighters who would be called on to tackle a fire. We now need to engage with fire and rescue services across the UK in the hope that this project is repeated elsewhere.”