09 September 2016
West Midlands Fire Service has revealed the reasons behind the massive fire safety repair works required at Coventry University Hospital, revealed last month.
The Coventry Telegraph reports that a joint investigation by the fire services and hospital bosses found that there were holes in fire compartment walls, which could affect how fire spreads around the hospital.
Hospitals are built in compartments which help limit the spread of fire, meaning patients do not have to be evacuated immediately allowing a gradual and safe evacuation.
A spokesperson for WMFS told the Coventry Telegraph: “Hospitals are extremely complex buildings. Their design is heavily compartmentalised which means they can adopt ‘progressive’ evacuation plans, rather than necessarily having to evacuate an entire site immediately.
“The issues identified relate to a number of breaches, or holes, in fire compartment walls, caused for example when piping and wiring were installed. This has implications for how fire might spread.”
The spokesman added: “The hospital’s and our first concern is clearly continuity of patient care.
“We are working closely with the hospital and are confident about the nature and pace of remedial works, as well as the evacuation strategy that will be in place while the work is carried out.”