North Ayrshire’s 7 towers do not have the life saving sprinklers

Not one of the seven tower blocks in North Ayrshire has a sprinkler system, it was confirmed this week.

The revelation comes in the wake of London’s Grenfell Tower fire disaster on June 14, which saw more than 80 people dead.

The law in Scotland states that any tower block built after 2005 must have a sprinkler system in place. North Ayrshire’s towers were constructed before that date Councils were not required to fit them retrospectively to blocks already built and hence the tower blocks in North Ayrshire do not have them.

There are 300 tower blocks across Scotland with no sprinkler system – including five in Irvine and two in Saltcoats.

In 1999, Irvine was rocked by a fatal tower block fire.

The Garnock Court building went up in flames and was described as ‘going up like a match’ after fire ripped up nine stories in 20 minutes.

Over 60 firefighters battled the blaze that left over 100 people homeless and caused the death of one 73-year-old resident.

A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson said this week: “We are carrying out a feasibility study regarding the retro-fitting of sprinklers in our high-rise flats and will be reporting on the findings at the earliest opportunity.

“In light of the tragic events in London, we would like to reassure residents that health and safety is an absolute priority for the council.

“We are carrying out detailed investigations of all of our highrise flats and working closely with colleagues at Scottish Fire and Rescue to make sure all appropriate safety measures are met.

“We would like to reassure tenants that as issues arise throughout the ongoing investigation into the Grenfell tragedy, we will continue to respond to any relevant matters as a priority.

“Our high-rise flats are covered by fire and smoke detection systems that are linked to our concierge service which ensures they are monitored 24 hours a day and seven days a week.”

The spokesman added: “The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service conduct quarterly inspections of all our residential high rise buildings, in addition to our own maintenance and inspection regimes.

“Residents are also encouraged to contact the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service to arrange a free home fire safety visit.”