Case 30 - Housing association removed fire extinguishers, door mats and wall signs for health and safety reasons


A housing association has ordered the removal of fire extinguishers, door mats and wall signs from a block of flats saying that health and safety rules prevent them being there.

Panel decision

There are no health and safety regulations which apply here and it is hard to understand how anyone could sensibly use "health and safety" as a reason to remove fire extinguishers. Some mats may present a slipping or tripping hazard but this can easily be addressed by explaining what can and can't be used rather than a blanket ban on all mats.

Additional Information

This was a "Fire Safety" issue governed by the (The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005) and so should have been quoted as the reason why fire extinguishers, door mats and wall signs were not present. Advice on the provision of fire extinguishers in purpose built flats is a matter for the fire authorities who administer this legislation, not HSE.