All Residents, Other

Fire Safety in your Home

The following letter was sent to the residents of the Curnock Estate regarding Fire Safety. To view the original document in a PDF format click here.

Housing and Adult Social Care
London Borough of Camden
Bidborough House
20 Mabledon Place
July 2009

Dear resident

Fire safety in your home

You will have heard about the terrible fire in Camberwell, where tragically six people lost their lives. The fire brigade is investigating this and we will be reviewing their findings as soon as they are available.

Your safety is our top priority and we are writing to you to give advice about fire safety in your home and to reassure you about the measures we have in place to protect you in the event of a fire.

We encourage all residents to have smoke alarms in their homes, and these can be fitted free by the London Fire Brigade who will also carry out a free home fire safety check. Call freephone: 0800 028 4428 or email

Residents who are over 60 or disabled can also have a smoke alarm fitted as part of Safe as Houses free home security equipment scheme. You can arrange this by calling 0845 450 0410 or by emailing

We service our fire safety systems and equipment on a regular basis. We also carry out inspections to identify any problems in buildings, for example where rubbish dumping is causing problems. We have carried out fire risk assessments in all our council blocks within -the past two years. We review these assessments periodically, following incidents or when major works are due to take place.

To help us manage fire safety in your blocks, do not store any of your belongings in the communal areas outside your homes and please ensure that rubbish is properly disposed of in the appropriate bins or chutes. We also ask you not to wedge open communal doors as these are a key part of preventing the spread of smoke or fire. It is also important not to change the fabric of your front door which will have been designed to address your protection in case of fire.

What do I do if there is a fire?

• If you are trapped, close the door of your room and use bedding, towels or clothing to block any gap under the door that might let smoke or fumes in.
• If you can, dial 999 and ask for the fire brigade. If not, shout from the window to attract attention and tell people to call the fire brigade.

If you live in a house, or in a flat or maisonette that is in a converted house rather than a purpose-built block, and there is a fire:

• If it is safe to, close doors to stop the fire spreading
• Get everyone outside quickly
• Call the fire brigade by dialling 999 once you are safe
• Stay out of your house until the fire brigade tell you it is safe to go back in.

If you live in a flat or maisonette in a purpose-built block and there is a fire somewhere else in the building:

• Stay in your home, make sure the doors are shut and keep calm
• Wait for the fire brigade to tell you if you should leave the building
• Purpose-built flats and maisonettes have fire safety measures built into them. However, if your home is affected by heat or smoke, get out at once and close the doors and windows behind you
• Do not use lifts.

More information on fire safety is available from Please contact your estate officer if you have any queries or concerns.

Yours faithfully

Jackie Smyth
Head of housing services (East)

Angela Spooner
Head of housing services (West)

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