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Brent carrying out urgent safety checks on tower blocks following the Grenfell Tower inferno

PUBLISHED: 15:02 15 June 2017 | UPDATED: 15:02 15 June 2017

The fire broke out at Grenfell Tower in the early hours of the morning (Picture: AP Matt Dunham)

The fire broke out at Grenfell Tower in the early hours of the morning (Picture: AP Matt Dunham)

Mischa Saag

Safety checks and estate visits are taking place in Brent to ensure all its 37 high rise towers are checked “without delay” following the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Safety advice in high-rise blocks

Make sure you have a working smoke alarm in your home

Keep balconies free from clutter

Don’t leave rubbish or bikes in communal areas or obstruct escape routes

Make sure you know where your nearest fire exit is

If you are a smoker please do not smoke in common areas of the block

Always fully extinguish cigarettes smoked in your home and dispose of them carefully and safely

In a report shown to the Brent&Kilburn Times, housing chiefs have set up a six-point action plan which includes checks that claddings applied to the outside of buildings are fire rated.

They are also liaising with the London Fire Brigade (LFB) to seek clarity and guidance around the “self evacuation” vs “stay put” briefing as many block residents are told to stay in their properties in the event of a fire.

The blaze in the early hours of Wednesday morning swept through the 24-storey Grenfell building in Ladbroke Grove, which has killed at least 17 people and left 20 fighting for their lives.

The death toll is tragically expected to rise.

The briefing was sent by Gary Wilkinson, director of property service at Brent Housing Partnership (BHP) to all council members.

There are 37 high rise blocks in Brent which the council said are all “Fire Risk Assessment compliant”.

Over the next 72 hours, visits will take place to all high-rise properties to enforce the removal of residents’ belongings from communal parts of the buildings where necessary.

A customer response team is to report any fire safety concerns raised by residents that “have or have not been attended to and /or completed”.

A former fire project manager who oversaw upgrade works in 2015 is to confirm all cladded properties are fire-rated and signed off by the council.

They are also liaising with Wates, the council’s preferred building contractor, to “discuss any outstanding actions to ensure fire safety defects are remedied without delay”.

Cllr Muhammed Butt, leader of the council, said in a statement that his thoughts were with those affected by the Grenfell disaster. He added: “I want to reassure tenants and leaseholders that, in Brent, all of our FRAs are up-to-date in all high rise properties and we are 100 per cent compliant also.

He continued: “As a council, working with BHP, we are doing all that we can to keep our residents safe from the devastating consequences of a major fire.”

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