Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
interestrateripoff

How many tower blocks will be condemned?

Recommended Posts

4 hours ago, crashmonitor said:

The irony is that it was all about improving energy efficiency and aesthetics  for £80,000 a unit. Meanwhile you could build a social housing unit for that up north.

Insane.

Shouldn't that read: it was all about throwing taxpayer money to corporate chums and party donors. Meanwhile you could genuinely invest in social housing?

Hang the lot of them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

London Tower Block Blaze: 'Endemic' Fire Risk in Housing Stock Across UK

Campaigners says there is an "endemic fire safety problem" in the type of housing stock at the center of the catastrophic fire in London, when fire ripped through and gutted a tower block within minutes, killing at least 17, with many hundreds still unaccounted for.

https://sputniknews.com/europe/201706151054656188-london-tower-fire-risk/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, regprentice said:

Fro what i have read the issue with the cladding is that the 'environmental' benefits have been allowed to supercede the fire safety risks. Some comments made by 'fire safety experts' in the guardian yesterday indicated that the Cladding used in similar buildings was effectively flammable  but used because it offered the highest rate of insulation. Supposedly, if the metal facing had been installed properly, a fire in one of the segments of insulation could not heave spread and would have burnt out. We might end up in a situation where the materials are subsequently deemed safe if installed properly, which would be no comfort to anyone living in such a building.

I think it's overplaying it to say that the environmental benefits have been allowed to supercede genuine fire safety concerns. That implies there was a real risk considered, that it was all installed properly, and someone said "yeah, go ahead, you can ignore fire regulations for environmental concerns." Lack of proper scrutiny for the methods used is a valid target for criticism but there's no fundamental reason why environmental and fire concerns have to be mutually exclusive.

Safe if installed properly should be fine. People don't get worked up by concrete buildings (other than because they're ghastly) just because some have collapsed from time to time due to being badly built.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, tomandlu said:

* the design is pretty clever. The corridors that access the flats hang between floors (see below for a 5-storey example), and you open your door and either climb up or down a set of stairs into your flat. The great thing is that this means your flat spans the whole width and you have windows both sides

Sounds like the sort of thing that would be banned nowdays for disability discrimination reasons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Riedquat said:

Sounds like the sort of thing that would be banned nowdays for disability discrimination reasons.

Stair lift?

I don't think stairs in houses are banned under discrimination laws, otherwise everything would either have to have lifts or be a bungalow (and in general, I'd guess those with a disability would be housed on the ground floor where possible - mainly for fire-safety).

Edited by tomandlu
missing closing bracket

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Errol said:

Other things should be mandatory - e.g. a fully operational, building-wide fire alarm system. Tests should be mandatory at least once a week.

If you really wanted safety, you could also mandate stuff like an emergency cupboard on the top floors, containing breathing masks and other emergency kit.

I would prefer an emergency escape chute on the top floor. They have been around for years. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, winkie said:

How many people living in high rise homes will now question the safety of their homes? 

What will be the cost of improving safety?

Where will those who have lost their home and all that they own now live?

Lots of questions require honest answers....... the accountability question rears its head again or lack of it.;)

 

a facebook page for HMOs have been telling the landlords to contact those affected. Seems our friendly landlords are circling overhead!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder how much of the £80k per flat refurbishment cost was identifiably spent on materials, labour and needed services; and how much was extracted in bonuses, management payments and other costs which have little credible justification.   The flammable cladding used seems to be the cheapest available.  Inflating costs and providing zilch seems to have become accepted practice, and there's always ready excuses about procedures having been followed to escape responsibilty. David Lammy has called for a corporate manslaughter charge, it's too early to know but I'd like to think that the investigation will look into the financial background as well as the immediate causes of the disaster.  But it's big can of big worms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, yeah, it's all the Tories fault. This would never have happened under Labour. Why don't we just skip the inquiry and just get David Lammy to decide who he reckons is guilty.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Orsino said:

Yeah, yeah, it's all the Tories fault. This would never have happened under Labour. Why don't we just skip the inquiry and just get David Lammy to decide who he reckons is guilty.

Que?

Lammy knows someone who is missing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, regprentice said:

I used to work in a warehouse with similar cladding, it was very challenging to get insurance for despite only being 5 years old. The insurers mandated the installation of sprinklers, however i was assured that 99% of sprinkler set offs only trigger 1 sprinkler head. you shouldn't be able to maliciously set of a sprinkler and turn on every sprinkler in the building - each sprinkler head independently detects smoke.

This is basically right. The conventional sprinkler system works on a very simple method - there are spray nozzles held closed by a liquid filled glass vial or a wax pellet. In the presence of heat, the liquid expands breaking the glass, or the pellet melts, releasing a spring which opens the valve.

This works fine in an industrial situation where you have well maintained fire detection equipment, trained fire marshalls, and the site is occupied, or there is ready access to a site keyholder. If you want to put sprinklers into individual flats, then you have a problem - they are fragile and easily damaged or vandalised, if they do activate then it may not be possible to gain access to an individual flat if the owner/occupier is away on holiday, etc; although I'm sure people could come up with sensible ways of mitigating these issues.

These days, there is new technology called water mist - this uses an ultra-fine spray pattern, which can use much less water than conventional sprinklers, so is less likely to cause damage. You can also get water mist extinguishers, which have numerous benefits over conventional CO2, powder and water extinguishers (and are safe to use on all common fires, including chip pan fires, electrical fires, flammable liquids and paper fires).

In communal areas, sprinklers may not be an unreasonable option and may help slow fires - but in general, sprinklers are not designed to extinguish fires, only slow their progression. However, it would be reasonable to reconsider their use in fire protection strategies - I'm not sure how much sprinkler systems cost, but I suspect that the cost would only be a few% of the £10m cost of the refurb project in this case. Similarly, the technology exists for multi-zone fire alarm systems, with sophisticated anti-false alarm logic (e.g. only trigger the alarm if 2 call points, or two detectors in reasonably close proximity trigger - but a single activaton would trigger a silent alarm to a building manager/response company and if they fail to clear the alarm within a certain period, proceed to full alarm).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Orsino said:

Yeah, yeah, it's all the Tories fault. This would never have happened under Labour. Why don't we just skip the inquiry and just get David Lammy to decide who he reckons is guilty.

Lanny may well be giving an emotional response to knowing someone missing.

 

At the same time it's a Tory Council and a Tory govt who've been promoting subsidised housing for the rich and not much of anything for the poor. Can't see how, politically, it could be blamed on anyone else. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Si1 said:

Lanny may well be giving an emotional response to knowing someone missing.

 

At the same time it's a Tory Council and a Tory govt who've been promoting subsidised housing for the rich and not much of anything for the poor. Can't see how, politically, it could be blamed on anyone else. 

Without knowing the cause of the fire, its weird to chuck condemnation into the equation without the facts of the matter. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, maverick73 said:

Without knowing the cause of the fire, its weird to chuck condemnation into the equation without the facts of the matter. 

No. It doesn't require Sherlock Holmes to tell you there was something severely wrong with the makeup of the building.

Absent a black swan, the buck stops with the govt. Unless you think govts shouldn't take responsibility for fire safety standards and enforcement?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Si1 said:

No. It doesn't require Sherlock Holmes to tell you there was something severely wrong with the makeup of the building.

Absent a black swan, the buck stops with the govt. Unless you think govts shouldn't take responsibility for fire safety standards and enforcement?

With the refurbishment by all accounts rather than the basic building.

9 minutes ago, Si1 said:

At the same time it's a Tory Council and a Tory govt who've been promoting subsidised housing for the rich and not much of anything for the poor. Can't see how, politically, it could be blamed on anyone else. 

If that was 100% the case then would it have been refurbished at all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Riedquat said:

With the refurbishment by all accounts rather than the basic building.

If that was 100% the case then would it have been refurbished at all?

Yes. It was the cheapest legal means of storing the plebs. As witnessed by their horrible deaths.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Si1 said:

Yes. It was the cheapest legal means of storing the plebs. As witnessed by their horrible deaths.

In 2016, do you recall the fire in Sheapards Bush tower block and the cause of the fire... 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, maverick73 said:

In 2016, do you recall the fire in Sheapards Bush tower block and the cause of the fire... 

I honestly don't. What was it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, Si1 said:

Yes. It was the cheapest legal means of storing the plebs. As witnessed by their horrible deaths.

Sticking flammable coating over it cost money. The cheapest means would've jammed a few more flats in (which I think happened) without doing anything to the outside.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Riedquat said:

Sticking flammable coating over it cost money. The cheapest means would've jammed a few more flats in (which I think happened) without doing anything to the outside.

They already had a flammable insulation coating from a previous refurb, apparently

 

http://m.insidehousing.co.uk/7019879.article?mobilesite=enabled

 

Edited by Si1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Riedquat said:

If it's the cladding and not the blocks, not many? Cladding that's been put up can be taken down again.

In what time frame? Do you leave people in a flat that could go up in flames whilst the issue is fixed?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Green issues also played a part. The chalcot estate has the same cladding. The architect was so proud of the cladding.....

http://www.building.co.uk/chalcot-estate-altered-towers/3113501.article

CO2 reduction was part of the initial strategy, says Sean Lockie, director at Faithful + Gould, the project manager on the scheme. “The 30% figure came about once we had looked at all the options that were open to us in terms of the cladding technologies, as well as the heating, lighting and power loads.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Riedquat said:

Sticking flammable coating over it cost money. The cheapest means would've jammed a few more flats in (which I think happened) without doing anything to the outside.

We'll probably never know how much of the £10m refurb cost is sitting in tax free offshore funds somewhere.  Whether it's a refurb or subdividing flats, the cost can be out of proportion to the work delivered. 

Corporate manslaughter seems a reasonable direction to consider at the moment so that difficult questions are asked and evidence gathered as soon as possible after the disaster, the usual routes of amending regulations or finding a technician to blame isn't going to be credible.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, interestrateripoff said:

In what time frame? Do you leave people in a flat that could go up in flames whilst the issue is fixed?

Depends on the liklihood as well as the consequences.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • The Prime Minister stated that there were three Brexit options available to the UK:   217 members have voted

    1. 1. Which of the Prime Minister's options would you choose?


      • Leave with the negotiated deal
      • Remain
      • Leave with no deal

    Please sign in or register to vote in this poll. View topic


×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.