Today (12th March) Sir David spoke in a Westminster Hall debate regarding Fire Safety and Sprinkler Systems.
Following from the Grenfell Tower and Lakanal House tragedies Sir David has joined calls to retrofit sprinkler systems in high rise residential buildings. This is in addition to the expansion of regulations so that developers are legally obliged to install sprinkler systems in new buildings, such as, purpose-built flats, residential care homes and HMO’s with more than six bedrooms.
Sir David has been the Chairman on the APPG on Fire Safety and Rescue for close to 20 years and for the majority of that time automatic fire sprinkler systems have featured on the agenda.
In his speech, Sir David Said: “We should never have got to the position of the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy, especially after the warnings and recommendations of the coroner at the Lakanal House fire inquest in 2013, and the rule 43 letter to the Secretary of State. We have all the correspondence about what the APPG was trying to do at the time. All Governments of all colours have failed us.
I am advised by organisations that manufacture automatic fire sprinkler systems that an estimated 1,000 towers have commenced or committed to installing sprinklers in existing tower blocks as a consequence of the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy. Already, Wales and Scotland are much further ahead in regulating for automatic fire sprinklers in their built environment. I say to my hon. Friend the Minister, who is a good and wise man: this nonsense can no longer go on and we will not accept it. We want action on this, and we want sprinklers to be installed retrospectively, particularly in all new school buildings”.
The full text of Sir David’s speech can be found here: https://hansard.parliament.uk/Commons/2019-03-12/debates/784DF134-B4BC-4F7A-9C1B-97E22D2FCD98/FireSafetyAndSprinklerSystems