Our Work

Fire Safety System Installation

Fire Safety System in a High Rise Building

IVP1228 R3 A4244
  • Introducing an interim fire detection system while building safety works are being carried out
  • Installing detectors in every dwelling and communal common areas
St Davids Court 2

St Davids Court is a 12-storey tower block in Walthamstow, which is home to 46 dwellings. Like hundreds of other tower blocks across the country, investigations by fire engineers found that it required remedial fire safety work in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

After St Davids Court’s inspection, Waltham Forest Council reacted quickly to initiate a Waking Watch, a system recommended by the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC). This Waking Watch requires trained personnel to patrol the building and its exterior 24/7 to ensure the early detection of a fire.

However, such measures are not designed for the long term. Waltham Forest, therefore, contacted Aston Group to design and implement a new L5 fire safety system.

St Davids Court is the first of Waltham Forest’s high-rise blocks to undergo these works.

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The Challenge

To ensure work is delivered as required meeting the requirements identified within the fire engineers' report and the NFCC Guidance document to support a temporary change to a simultaneous evacuation strategy in a purpose-built block of flats.

This required a system that mitigated the unique risks highlighted by the Grenfell tragedy. This included the threat of fire entering from outside the building through external windows and doors.

All of this work would also need to be carried out while the building was occupied. Building and maintaining good relationships with them would be key to ensuring that work could be carried out in a timely way. Some reluctance about the works had already been highlighted, which meant that the client and Aston Group would need to reach out to these residents and provide clear information about what was being done and why.

The Solution

We, therefore, designed an L5 system, which involves heat detectors being set up in every dwelling and detection along the communal common areas.

The detectors form part of the main system. If a fire is detected, an alert is sent to the fire panel where this is to be connected to the Alarm Receiving Centre. This means that Fire and Rescue Services and the maintenance contractor for the building are notified of any activations with the system.

When it came to addressing residents’ concerns, our team including Waltham Forest Housing carried out a number of demonstrations helping to explain the system, why the system was being installed and the safety this provides.

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The Results

Providing an L5 Fire Safety System to the requirements identified within the fire engineer's recommendations for this building and to meet the requirements of the NFCC Guidance to support a temporary change to a simultaneous evacuation strategy in a purpose-built block of flats.

Future Proposed Systems for the Building

  • New Evacuation Alert System for all flat dwellings
  • LD1 Smoke detection upgrade to all flat dwellings
  • Upgrading the existing communal AOV system
  • New Sprinkler System to all flat dwellings
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