Thursday, January 26, 2017

Fire Safety Concerns Oakham Town Council and Victoria Hall Oakham

Dear Adam Lowe

I like the other Councillor have noticed the car parked and obstructing the fire exit doors at Church Street exit of Victoria Hall

it seems to becoming a regular occurrence.

As for fire safety at Victoria Hall I have had some concerns for some time and I have raised them on more than

one occasion.

I am have a big worry about the internal office door being locked whilst anyone is in the council chamber or the office. This door could be the office staffs only means of escape. When I have raised this before I was told staff have keys.

In the event of a fire it is hard to find keys, I speak from experience.

I have raised concerns about the chamber door being locked whilst people are using the chamber during the day and once during a evening meeting.

I have suggested the mortise lock is removed from the chamber door and a yale type latch lock is fitted and the same is fitted on the internal office door.

I also pointed out that the door in the corner of the room has been blocked up many years ago this door is the nearest to a set of double fire exit doors leading to the outside, the eternal gate doors are also fitted with escape locks. The windows do not open and if fire is detected firescreens close automatically obstructing the windows.

I have given up asking the staff to ensure the padlock is removed from the gates in Church which is a marked escape route. Before meetings I now just check if it is locked and remember to use the other two escape routes.

I would not like to see the result of a fire if all the people upstairs last niight had piled down the stairs into that confined space possibly followed by thick smoke.

Perhaps the Councils Victoria Hall Trustee could ask Victoria to replace the padlock with a quick release lock and review their fire safety procedures.

New members of the council may probably note that the Council does not provide any induction, which should include what to do in the event of an emergency along with other important information.

I was wonder if the council should seek training for a member of staff and a Cllr for the role of fire warden /

safety officer.

I don't believe our fire extinguishers have been checked for some time. I have not seen any payment

for service and safety checks for years. Maybe this could be checked.

A lot of this concern was brought back to me last night when Cllr Haley delibratley locked me in the council chamber.

I counted to ten and did not smash the door down and instead returned to the middle door and repeadely asked

to be let out.  I considered Cllr Michael Haleys actions as false imprisonment.

Martin Brookes