Fire concierges for Edinburgh tower blocks

Image caption, Firefighters hope the move will help to prevent fires in tower blocks

Special fire liaison concierges are to be posted at tower blocks across Edinburgh in a drive to prevent fires breaking out.

At least 15 trainees are to take on the job of spotting potential hazards and to promote fire safety in the high rises.

They will encourage residents to fit smoke alarms and educate them on fire safety measures.

The move comes after a number of recent fatal fires in tower blocks across the country.

Norman Work, vice convener of Edinburgh City Council's housing and social care committee, said trainee concierges would be acting as the eyes and ears of the Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service over the next year.

He said: "This is a great partnership scheme, as not only will it provide local unemployed people with training and a job for six months but it will also build their confidence and work skills.

"The project will also be a huge benefit to the residents of these high rise homes in Edinburgh in that they will be given first class fire safety advice from professionals within the fire service."

John Dickey, Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service community firefighter, said: "This is a fantastic way of ensuring that we spread the word about the availability of free homes safety visits and smoke alarms to residents.

"The trainee concierges will be in a position to build relationships with those living in high rises and talk to them about how to reduce the risk.

"We will be involved in training staff in basic fire safety, particularly how they can contribute to tenant and firefighter safety."

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