Reduce Fire Risk


Since the tragedies at Lakanal House and Grenfell Tower, fire safety in the social housing sector is becoming an increasingly high-profile issue. Landlords have a duty under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Act 2005 to minimise fire risk and ensure safe means of escape. Fire risk assessments must be carried out on all properties, and Fire Officers can issue non-compliance notices if they consider fire precautions inadequate, and order closure or evacuation of a property if remedial actions are not carried out.

metroSTOR provides simple and easy to implement solutions to fire safety issues. By using fire resistant materials and designs, we can help you minimise fire risk within the neighbourhoods you manage.

Waste and recycling bin fires

Most waste materials ignite easily, burn fiercely and give off large volumes of noxious fumes. Within a communal housing environment this risk often presents itself where internal bin rooms or chutes are not adequately protected against fire and smoke. This can necessitate costly upgrades to achieve compliance and many landlords at this point consider changing to external storage, particularly as this also helps reduce the blockages and lack of recycling that frequently plague blocks fitted with chutes.

Fire risk is also commonly identified where the refuse storage provision has become inadequate due to current volumes of waste or a change to containerisation instead of sack collections, typically leading to unsecured bins outside dwellings and accumulations of side waste which are of course arson triggers in themselves.

To help combat waste and recycling bin fires, fire prevention organisations such as the FPA and CFPA-E recommend that bins should not be stored within six metres of any building opening such as doors, windows, ventilation ducts or exposed soffits and fascias. If this safety distance is impossible to achieve, they should be stored in a structure providing 30 minutes fire resistance. They should also be secured in place to prevent being moved closer to the building.

metroSTOR bin stores enable you to secure bins at a safe distance from dwellings, and where the six metre recommendation cannot be achieved due to site constraints, the risk can be reduced by specifying cladding materials tested to BS476 to provide 30 minutes fire resistance.

Fire risks when charging and storing mobility scooters indoors

The National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) have developed statutory guidance to reduce fire risk associated with mobility scooter battery charging and storage. The recommendation is that if a fire-resistant storage area cannot be created within a building, then secure storage with provision for charging should be provided at least six metres from dwellings.

metroSTOR offers external mobility scooter stores which are cost-effective, quick to install and can be extended or relocated as requirements change. Where the six metre recommendation cannot be achieved due to site constraints, the risk can be reduced with units specified with cladding materials tested to BS476 to provide 30 minutes fire resistance.

Storage issues can lead to fire escape obstruction

Items stored in communal hallways, stairwells and lobbies such as prams, buggies and outdoor toys cause obstructions to routes designated as safe means of escape and are frequently identified as an issue on fire risk assessments. A policy of banning any items in fire escape routes can be difficult to enforce when tenants have very little room in their dwellings and there is no additional safe storage space offered.

metroSTOR has a range of external individual locker stores that are cost-effective, simple to install and easy to use.