Revealed: No sprinklers fitted in Redbridge care homes which reported fires last year

PUBLISHED: 15:34 22 March 2018 | UPDATED: 17:54 22 March 2018

Photo: Ken Mears

Photo: Ken Mears


No sprinklers had been fitted in any of the seven homes for vulnerable residents set ablaze in Redbridge last year, it has been revealed.

Fires have been reported at four sheltered housing schemes, two retirement homes and nursing home in the borough since the start of 2017, according to figures from London Fire Brigade (LFB).

No fatalities or injuries were reported.

LFB are calling for sprinklers to be installed in all care homes, sheltered housing schemes as well as all residential blocks over 18m in height.

“Small fires can kill and soon develop into large fires unless they are stopped,” said Fraser Ferguson, LFB’s Borough commander for Redbridge.

He added: “Sprinklers are the only system which detects a fire, suppresses a fire and raises the alarm.”

“If you are housing vulnerable people, you have a responsibility for their welfare and that means ensuring what fire suppression measures you need to have in place.”

LFB are raising awareness about sprinklers after it was revealed that only one percent of the care homes, retirement homes and hostels they were called to across the capital last year have been fitted with sprinklers.

Of the 428 incidents reported, there were three fatalities and 53 injuries.

Mr Ferguson added: “It’s a tragic fact that many of the fires we see involve vulnerable people who have mobility and/or health issues that mean they are unable to escape even small fires and they may suffer fatal or life changing injuries before the fire Brigade is even called.

“We need to ensure sufficient and appropriate protection measures are in place to safeguard these people where they live and suppression systems should be part of those considerations.

Sprinklers play a significant role in reducing the impact of fire on people, property and the environment.

They also help firefighters in search and rescue operations by limiting fire development and reducing risk to firefighters.

The LFB offers personal fire safety advice in your home and will also fit a free smoke alarm where needed.

Find out more at or by calling 0800 028 4428

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