The importance of fire safety in the mobility industry

In June 2017, tragedy struck when Grenfell tower was destroyed in an inferno that killed many, and left many more wounded and homeless. While the impact of this disaster reaches well beyond our industry, it is nonetheless true that it shines a light on issues within it to do with fire safety. It is now painfully and demonstrably true that addressing these issues can save lives.

In England and Wales there is no statutory requirement to fit fire protection to the underside of top cover lid for residential installations through floor lifts. Crucially, this means there is no fire protection in the aperture, which is usually situated between the living room and bedroom. Should the person within that bedroom be of limited mobility, this can have fatal consequences. It is vital that – if you are considering the installation of a lift – you ensure the correct fire safety measures are in place – whether they are a legal requirement or otherwise.

Another fire safety hazard that is particularly significant for the mobility industry concerns mobility scooters. Sarah Lander, Tenancy Services Manager at South Essex Homes, explains:

“While scooters provide a lifeline for many, they have also posed a problem for us for many years. The sale of scooters is unregulated and often residents buy a scooter without any training or guidance and store them in unsafe places, such as stairways, which present a fire risk.”

For this reason, it is important that you understand how to manage your mobility scooter – not just on the road, but in life. Shire Mobility believes in tackling fire safety within the industry head on. As a minimum, that means going further than regulations require, and explaining everything our customers need to know as clearly and simply as possible.