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Extinguishers in communal areas?

Guest Eric

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Hi, I have recently purchased a flat (one of eleven) in a converted old school.  In addition to the leasehold I purchased the freehold to the entire building and therefore I'm also the landlord. The building has an established group of directors (resident owners) who have appointed a third party management company to manage the maintenance and repair of the property.  We (myself and wife) are holiday letting our apartment and have replaced all the alarms (fire and CO2), extinguishers and fire blankets with new and agreed a maintenance programme independently of the directors or management company to maintain and service the stuff in our apartment with a local fire consultant.  When speaking to the management company I pointed out the extinguishers in the communal areas had out of date test stickers, I chased and last week we had a contractor in to check the fire alarms (I have yet to go back and check the extinguishers were updated but I suspect they were done at the same time - I will check in a couple of days time to confirm).  When discussing this issue the management company have stated they are proposing at the next AGM to discuss the idea to remove extinguishers from communal areas (cost and hassle was mentioned), when I said I wasn't particularly sure about this I was told that extinguishers in communal areas encourage people to tackle fires and therefore potentially put people in harms way.  I'm off the opinion that we should keep as a means to aid escape but I am going into AGM without knowing what everybody else thinks - it may get passed, if I don't know what's law or best practice the other residents may not either.  I haven't been able to find any legislation (although I may not be looking in the right place) that states one way or another what's best.  What's your thoughts on fire extinguishers in communal areas - are they good or bad.  As far as I am aware the building meets all legal requirements with regards fire safety.


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Current government guidance is not to have communal extinguishers in flats to avoid people re-entering a burning flat once already in a protected route instead of continuing to escape.

Users are often untrained, the communal extinguishers are often unsuitable for some of common domestic fire causes (electrical, cooking oils) and as the common areas are protected escape routes they should not contain anything to need extinguishing in the first place.

The management company would be following current accepted practice.

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