House fires can have a devastating effect on the lives of those living on the property and to those closest to them if lives are lost. It is vitally important to stay on top of fire safety and related maintenance.
Where units and flats are concerned it is the responsibility of the body corporate to ensure common areas have well-equipped and working fire installations.
Body corporate first point of call
Reliable body corporate services will have such items installed and maintained by a qualified and experienced person who is licensed to implement the following:
- Fire doors;
- Exit signs;
- Extinguishers and hydrants;
- Emergency lighting;
- Fire hose reels;
- Smoke detectors; and
- Evacuation signs and routes.
At WA Strata Management we don’t take such an important issue lightly and we make sure that maintenance is carried out on a yearly basis and any reported risks or damage that is reported will be investigated on top of this.
It is also our responsibility to ensure that evacuation plans, diagrams and signs are well displayed and easily visible in the common areas. Failure to do this is not complying with the Building Fire and Safety Regulation Act 2008.
Residents who believe there may be an issue with any of these items should contact us so we may have the problem rectified.
What else can residents do?
As residents and neighbours it’s ideal that everyone living in the scheme undertakes some responsibility in avoiding fire hazards and ensuring safety. Not leaving flammable material on the stairs or under buildings and reporting any tripping hazards in evacuation routes is a way to prevent hazards in common areas.
Familiarise yourself and other occupants with the fire procedure and layout of building in case of fire; don’t be complacent in thinking it won’t happen to you.
There are things residents can individually do in their homes too. Make sure that plugs and chords are in good condition and report any rats in the building as they can cause fires by chewing through chords. Clean the lint filter in your dryer often if you have one and check that smoke detectors and alarms are functioning with batteries fully charged.
Some of the major causes of fires in winter are portable heaters. Don’t forget to turn these off and don’t place near flammable items such as curtains, clothing or lounges. Check chords on electric blankets for any fraying before use.
Candles are ambient and romantic but don’t leave them unattended and don’t leave cooking unattended, especially if you have young children.
Ultimately fire safety is the responsibility of everyone and at WA Strata Management we make sure we do our part. If you want to report any fire safety issues in your building contact us today!