Public Housing Fire Safety Blitz To Save Lives

Victorians living in high-rise public housing estates will be better protected from fire emergencies, thanks to a new safety blitz announced by the Andrews Labor Government.

Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley today announced $21.7 million to install extra sprinklers, smoke detectors and smoke lobbies in all residential towers, as part of the Victorian Budget 2018/19.

The Labor Government’s fire safety package will support upgrades to corridors and common areas on hundreds of floors of high-rise public housing.

The devastating Grenfell Tower fire in London has highlighted the need to consider fire safety in public housing, while a corridor fire at apartments in Fitzroy last year, saw more than 200 people evacuated and 50 others treated by paramedics.

Fires in high rise public housing are most likely to start in common areas, and these improvements were recommended following a fire safety review by the Metropolitan Fire Brigade.

New fire safety equipment is already being planned for estates in Fitzroy and South Melbourne. The remaining upgrades will roll out across other housing estates, following a design and tender process.

Victorian high-rise buildings – which meet all current fire regulations – have concrete floors and walls which limit any spread of fire between units. Every unit has a sprinkler system and smoke alarm installed.

High-rise fire safety system checks are carried out on a monthly basis by qualified and registered fire services contractors.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Disability and Ageing Martin Foley

“In a fire, seconds can mean the difference between life and death.”

“This investment will make sure we have the right safety precautions covering every floor, and every inch, of our public housing towers.”

“There’s nothing more important than the safety of Victorians. It’s why we’re making sure our public housing towers have modern fire safety equipment installed.”

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