Coroner calls for sprinklers to be installed in all new homes

Posted 08/07/2016 by Macdonald Martin Ltd.

Categories: Uncategorised

Dan Spencer was killed in his home in Derbyshire after a blaze broke out at the property. It was a chip pan fire that caused the premise to go up in flames, giving Mr Spencer very little chance of survival.

Dr Robert Hunter has said he will be writing to Secretary of State for Communities Greg Clark to ask him to consider his plans to make sprinklers a legal requirement in all homes. He said: “There is a movement for new-build houses to be fitted with water sprinklers. Currently there is no legal requirement to fit them. However, fire service throughout the country have done a lot of research of the effectiveness of the systems.”

Dr Hunter asked the Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service station manager, Wayne Brooks, who investigated the fire; “If the property had been fitted with sprinkler systems, could it have put out the fire or could it have dampened it?”

Mr Brooks replied: “It would have to be a yes. Would it have saved his life? I can’t say 100% but it would have suppressed the fire, especially coupled with a smoke alarm, it would have greatly increased his chances of escape. It also have made it safer for people to go into the property to make rescue attempts.”

Dr Hunter then added: “It is a relatively inexpensive technique in a new house, costing about £2,000. I have the power to make a report to try to prevent this from happening in the future. I am going to write to the secretary of state for him to consider it. This is the second death from a house fire in a year and, in the last one, I also wrote to the secretary of state. If other people can have their lives saved, then it can make a difference to their families.”