Residents living in the Wigan Borough’s high-rise flats are being invited to have their say on plans to install sprinkler systems in their homes.
As part of a Greater Manchester wide project, Wigan Council has proposed that all council owned high-rise residential blocks in Wigan town centre should be fitted with sprinkler systems next year following the tragic Grenfell Tower fire in 2017.
And now, residents are being asked for their thoughts by completing a consultation, which has been posted through their doors.
Following frequent engagement with the Hi-Risers tenant group who represent residents living in the blocks, the local authority has also created a show flat in Boyswell House, which is open for residents to view so they can get an insight into what the systems will look like in their homes.
Councillor Terry Halliwell, portfolio holder for housing and welfare at Wigan Council said: “Although we have a good fire safety record in our high rise blocks, the welfare of our residents is our number one priority.
“None of our blocks have the same cladding as the Grenfell tower but we still want to make them as safe as possible so our residents are reassured.
“We have been thorough during the development process by visiting neighbouring areas within Greater Manchester to see how they have approached installing sprinkler systems in order to learn from their experiences and ensure as smooth a process for residents as possible.
“We have engaged with the Hi-Risers group, but we also want to hear the views of all residents living in the block, which is why we have opened a consultation.
“We will continue this engagement and our work with the fire service, who also support this proposal, and we encourage all residents to come along to the show flat to ask any questions they may have.”
The sprinkler pipework will be hidden and the sprinkler heads will have white discs covering them, which will fall away if activated.
Assistant Chief Fire Officer at Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue, Tony Hunter said: “We welcome the proposal by Wigan Council to install fire sprinklers into their high-rise residential blocks of flats.
“Fire sprinkler systems are very effective in controlling or extinguishing a fire in 99 per cent of cases where they operate and in residential properties they reduce the damage by 75 per cent but crucially they dramatically improve occupants’ safety.
“If residents would benefit from further safety advice, we do offer free ‘safe and well’ visits undertaken by trained staff. More information on this can be found on our website.”
The consultation opened on Tuesday 23rd October and will close on 26th November.
The consultation form has been sent to all residents by post.
If residents have any questions or queries about the consultation or proposals, they should email firstname.lastname@example.org.