Trafford Housing Trust - Stretford House – Installation of Just 30 Minute Fire Doors - 60 Minute Compartmental Fire Safety Claim But Too Many Undermining Factors – True or False?
Neil A. Carter made this Rhyddid Gwybodaeth request to Trafford Housing Trust
This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.
Dear Trafford Housing Trust,
The Assistant Director Mike Corfield at Trafford Housing Trust has stated after the man-made and preventable Grenfell tragedy that the residents at Stretford House have at least 60 minutes to survive a serious fire due to the compartmental fire safety system that is in place here. On balance, is this more a true, honest and accurate statement or more an untrue, inaccurate and dishonest statement given all the facts?
I understand that a compartmental fire safety system is only as secure as the weakest point of that compartmental fire safety system which would now be significantly reduced from the stated optimal 60 minutes by a number of very questionable and cheapscape decisions made by Trafford Housing Trust and many undeniable unpalatable facts they are now having to pay for all over again at an even larger cost to life; the cheap 30 minute fire doors that Trafford Housing Trust have chosen for us all instead of the more expensive 60 minute fire doors which through their calculated corner cutting has straight away halved all our fire breach survival chances to just 30 minutes, the decrepit windows that are in a very poor state of disrepair that have been needed to be replaced for years that keeps getting put off due to their lack of the necessary monies to be able to do so, and the numerous seriously insecure service shafts that are like large chimney stacks throughout the entire building linking all floors that would act like a blowtorch and help spread these fires especially when it blows a gale which is a frequent occurrence here, and not forgetting the very costly and incompetent disgrace of all the very poorly installed and insecure renovations that Trafford Housing chose to undertake on the cheap to cut even more corners by using all the wrong materials instead of the proper fire retardant materials which has now helped create a direct fire link that wasn’t there before between all the flats for a serious fire to now enable it to spread significantly easier and faster, and all those monies that has been wasted on employing incompetent and grossly negligent shirkers of responsibility like those mentioned that have incorrectly installed all these minimal 30 minute fire doors that those that don’t have to live here have allocated for us all, putting all our lives at significantly increased risk that all the evidence suggests we couldn’t possibly last a serious fire breach for even the minimal 30 minutes now due to their serious breaches of fire security now obvious to those who are actually willing and responsible enough to take a proper look at them all, and is this all down to money and the lack of it, or the unwillingness to spend it, and the deregulated and privatisation processes now in place with the predator culture of dwindling profit seeking companies and their corner cutting unprofessional sub-contractors they have continuously employed over all these incompetent and grossly negligent years of their completely culpable and utter ill-governance?!!
Isn’t it a lot more honest, accurate and true to say that we will be extremely lucky to survive a serious fire breach of this current compartmental system at Stretford House for the full 60 minutes that your assistant director Mike Corfield has stated with ALL these perilous and obvious weaknesses to this current fire compartmental safety system that Trafford Housing Trust have incompetently calculated and culpably chosen to take which have significantly and unquestionably added to this life threatening predicament or are being forced to take due to the lack of all the appropriate and necessary funds which seriously undermines this apparently achievable optimal figure, and the facts are all there for anyone with a mind to see that it is highly unlikely we would all survive a fire breach for the full 60 minutes previously stated or even the minimal 30 minutes now given all these disgraceful, palpable and undeniable facts being laid out before you?!!!
Neil A. Carter
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Dear Mr Carter
Re: Freedom of Information Request dated 4^th December 2017
I’m writing to respond to the 10 emails which you sent on 4^th December,
making Freedom of Information requests. I emailed you on 5^th December
confirming that I had received your requests and that, whilst Trafford
Housing Trust does not legally have to respond to any Freedom of
Information requests, I would look into what we could share with you.
Having consulted with my colleagues – Iain Wallace, Director of
Properties, and Mike Corfield, Assistant Director – Customers, I am now
able to respond to you more fully.
Firstly I would like to explain that we have limited resources to
investigate and respond to Freedom of Information requests. You sent 10
emails and requested a large amount of information, so I wanted to let you
know that I will only be able to give you some of what you have asked for.
To enable me to look at your request, I have summarised the issues you
raised and created one response, which I am sending to all 10 of the email
addresses you made requests from.
From reading your emails, it’s clear to me that you’re very concerned
about fire safety and in particular the fire door on your property. I’ve
therefore focused this letter on responding to the key concerns you have
o Who is the decision maker when it comes to deciding which fire doors
to install in Stretford House?
When THT undertakes works of this type, a competent consultant is selected
to assess the requirements and make a recommendation on the right
solution, or door in this scenario. The consultant is independent of THT,
and will have suitable qualifications including knowledge of fire safety
matters. The Director of Property Services will then appoint a contractor
to supply and fit doors in accordance with the recommendation given by the
o Who is responsible for the safety of our high rise buildings? Building
manager and responsible person.
All stakeholders play a part in ensuring the safety of a building. In the
scenario of the door, The Director of Property Services is the responsible
o How are we assured that the fire doors installed at Stretford House
are fit for purpose and installed correctly?
As mentioned above, when THT undertake a program of works, a competent
consultant is commissioned to assess the requirements and make a
recommendation on the appropriate solution. The consultant will ensure the
door complies with all of the appropriate regulations. As well as this,
THT carries out different inspections which might suggest what type of
door is suitable, for example stock condition surveys will review our
properties to understand what state they are in and any works which are
required to ensure they remain compliant with current legislation.
As you are aware, we also carry out Fire Risk Assessments and as part of
these the Assessor will look at the suitability of a door, and make
recommendations for improvement should doors not meet the required
Following the installation of the doors, a number of them will be
inspected by a competent person to ensure that they are fitted correctly
and the contractor has done their job.
o What confirmation do we have from the fire service about their
capacity to respond to a fire at Stretford House?
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service have provided verbal assurances
that they have the necessary resources to respond to a fire at Stretford
o You expressed concerns about the service shafts and quality of windows
at Stretford House which you worry would exacerbate a fire.
THT will appoint a competent consultant to assess the windows.
The service shafts, otherwise known as risers, have been inspected by an
appropriately accredited contractor, with all known defects being
corrected as soon as the inspection had taken place.
o How many tower blocks do we have?
THT has eight tower blocks.
Your request questioned the rationale for installing a 30 minute fire door
rather than 60 minute fire door at your property, and I understand that
this is the subject of a complaint which is being investigated currently.
I therefore won’t seek to answer that question here as it will be covered
as part of your complaint. Your complaint needs to be resolved and I
understand that we will be scheduling a final meeting with our Chief
Customer Experience Officer and members of the Board who will hear your
complaint and make a final decision on the matters you raised.
You made a number of requests for documentation and historic information
about all of THT’s tower blocks and the works which have been done to
them. I’m sorry I’m not able to provide this information to you as I don’t
have the resources to search our records and extract copies of the things
you’ve asked for.
I hope that this letter, whilst not providing everything you asked for,
has helped to reassure you that we take fire safety seriously and make
sure that we have the right advice from competent experts when making
decisions about fire doors.
Vicky Parr | Governance & Compliance Manager | Governance & Business
Assurance | Company Secretariat | 5th floor, Barkers Lane, Sale Point |
Trafford Housing Trust
DDi: 0161 968 0596 | [mobile number] | Main: 0300 777 7777 | Fax: 0300
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