Fire officers visit 182 high rise properties following Grenfell Tower tragedy

Tyne and wear Fire and Rescue Service high rise safety campaign at Aberdeen Tower Silksworth. From left firefighter Eddie Harrison, crew manager Paul Scott, watch manager Shaun Makine, firefighter Greg Queen and firefighter Andrew Subbing.

Visits by Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service to North East high rises following the Grenfell Tower disaster have now ended. A total of 182 properties across Sunderland, South Tyneside, Newcastle and Gateshead have been inspected since the tragedy, which took place at the London tower block in June.

Tyne and wear Fire and Rescue Service high rise safety campaign at Aberdeen Tower Silksworth.

At least 80 people are thought to have been killed although the final death toll might not be known until at least the end of the year.

The visits – which were carried out over two weeks – saw the Service undertake fire safety checks, and carry out audits to update building knowledge; whilst prevention teams were on hand to provide advice to residents.

Among the towers visited were those in the Lakeside Village area of Sunderland, in Farringdon.

Alan Robson, Assistant Chief Fire Officer of Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) said: “This phase of our high rise work was highly successful in strengthening our building intelligence and in giving additional confidence and reassurance to residents.

“I’d like to thank everyone involved, from the local authorities and other housing providers to the residents who welcomed us into their homes.”

“As well as gathering information and undertaking checks, we also identified three key areas where residents needed support to improve their own understanding of fire prevention and safety, particularly on escape routes, how to stop a fire from spreading and fire doors.”

The service’s areas of concern include escape routes, fire doors and protecting others in event of a fire.

TWFRS’ Prevention and Education teams will be revisiting all the properties in the near future, to offer free home safety checks, advice and guidance.