23 August 2018
Arun District Council could face enforcement action after it was found to have breached statutory health and safety requirements in relation to fire and water safety by the Regulator of Social Housing.
The council, which owns about 3,500 properties, has been issued with a regulatory notice, detailing concerns about the fact Arun did not have, until 2016, a programme in place to carry out fire and water risk assessments across its stock. It only carried them out as and when issues were reported.
“This means that Arun DC cannot provide assurance that all of the relevant properties had a risk assessment in place until very recently,” the regulator said.
While a programme of fire risk assessments has now been completed the regulator said the council “has not yet completed the actions arising out of those fire risk assessments”.
A programme of water risk assessments is underway but “until that work is completed, it cannot fully implement measures to control any risks to tenants”. “Mitigating actions have been put in place while the programme is being delivered,” the regulator said.
The notice later added: “Both fire safety and water safety are self-evidently important because of the potential for serious harm to tenants. In this case the regulator has concluded that the risk of serious harm is demonstrated because of the large number of tenants potentially exposed to an unknown risk of danger over a long period of time.”
The regulator added it “will work with Arun DC as it seeks to address the issues which have led to this situation, and will consider what, if any, further action to take in relation to the breach of the Home Standard.”
Original sourceLocal Government Chronicle