Eastbourne Pier fire: Owners ‘ignored sprinkler advice’

Eastbourne Pier

Eastbourne Pier

First published in News by

A FIRE boss claims to have recommended a sprinkler system was installed on Eastbourne Pier twice in recent years – but his advice was ignored by the pier’s owners.

Andy Reynolds, director of prevention and protection at East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, said the owners of Eastbourne Pier were told in 2006 and 2009 to install sprinklers.

However he claims the owners ignored the advice as sprinklers were not enforceable by law.

Mr Reynolds said: “On at least two occasions we recommended to the owners of the pier that they should install sprinklers.

“It’s not enforceable and for them probably not cost effective so they didn’t take up the option. Without a doubt sprinklers would have helped reduce the damage of the fire.

“When they’re fitted correctly and operating they do a good job. They detect fires with heat sensitive bulbs that react to a certain temperature.

“As soon as it hits the right temperature, the sprinkler operates and is connected to an alarm.

“There still would have been a fire, but the sprinkler system holds it in check so it wouldn’t have grown.”

Mr Reynolds said he would be pushing for the installation of a sprinkler system in the pier’s refurbishment following the news the town would receive £2 million from government.

He added: “There are none on Brighton Pier, were none on Eastbourne and none on Hastings. It’s only a matter of time before it happens again so I hope the likes of Brighton take note from what’s happened in Eastbourne and get installing.

“Brighton has a drenching system in place but not a complete sprinkler system.”

Eastbourne Pier had not responded to Mr Reynold’s comments before publication.

Anne Martin, manger at Brighton’s Palace Pier, said she was “bemused” by Mr Reynold’s comments.

She said: “I’m sure we’ll be able to engage in conversation with the fire authority but we have a fire risk assessment approved by East Sussex Fire and Rescue so I’m a little bemused by his comments.

“We are confident that what we have here is as good as we can get. We continue to ask the public to be careful with things like cigarettes but we have 24 cover on the pier and regular fire training, which is what they recommended.”

Comments (11)

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9:13am Sat 2 Aug 14

rogerthefish says...

“It’s not enforceable and for them probably not cost effective so they didn’t take up the option. Without a doubt sprinklers would have helped reduce the damage of the fire"

I think the main thing in his statement is cost effective, and these systems are not cheap and as we are aware sometimes they cause more damage than they save. What happens if there is accidental leakage from the automatic fire sprinkler system? which could be inadvertent overheating as in the day it happened, freezing, mechanical damage, corrosion, manufacturing defect, installation defect or deliberate sabotage.

Anyway it's easy to say after the horse has bolted.
“It’s not enforceable and for them probably not cost effective so they didn’t take up the option. Without a doubt sprinklers would have helped reduce the damage of the fire" I think the main thing in his statement is cost effective, and these systems are not cheap and as we are aware sometimes they cause more damage than they save. What happens if there is accidental leakage from the automatic fire sprinkler system? which could be inadvertent overheating as in the day it happened, freezing, mechanical damage, corrosion, manufacturing defect, installation defect or deliberate sabotage. Anyway it's easy to say after the horse has bolted. rogerthefish
  • Score: 2

1:36pm Sat 2 Aug 14

BeeJam says...

" Anne Martin, manger at Brighton’s Palace Pier, said she was “bemused” by Mr Reynold’s comments."

Well Anne Martin I hope your 'bemusement' does not come back to haunt you! I'm also not reassured by your 'bemusement' that the Palace Pier (and always the Palace Pier) is doing all it can to protect the safety of its visitors. Your attitude is rather arrogant one might say.

As the Palace Pier's owners will know all too well, fires can start in the strangest and most unlikeliest of ways, like on the end of a non-accessible and derelict pier in Brighton about to undergo a massive restoration.........
.....
" Anne Martin, manger at Brighton’s Palace Pier, said she was “bemused” by Mr Reynold’s comments." Well Anne Martin I hope your 'bemusement' does not come back to haunt you! I'm also not reassured by your 'bemusement' that the Palace Pier (and always the Palace Pier) is doing all it can to protect the safety of its visitors. Your attitude is rather arrogant one might say. As the Palace Pier's owners will know all too well, fires can start in the strangest and most unlikeliest of ways, like on the end of a non-accessible and derelict pier in Brighton about to undergo a massive restoration......... ..... BeeJam
  • Score: 23

1:51pm Sat 2 Aug 14

theargusissoinformative says...

BeeJam wrote:
" Anne Martin, manger at Brighton’s Palace Pier, said she was “bemused” by Mr Reynold’s comments."

Well Anne Martin I hope your 'bemusement' does not come back to haunt you! I'm also not reassured by your 'bemusement' that the Palace Pier (and always the Palace Pier) is doing all it can to protect the safety of its visitors. Your attitude is rather arrogant one might say.

As the Palace Pier's owners will know all too well, fires can start in the strangest and most unlikeliest of ways, like on the end of a non-accessible and derelict pier in Brighton about to undergo a massive restoration.........

.....
Pretty spot on, I'd say
[quote][p][bold]BeeJam[/bold] wrote: " Anne Martin, manger at Brighton’s Palace Pier, said she was “bemused” by Mr Reynold’s comments." Well Anne Martin I hope your 'bemusement' does not come back to haunt you! I'm also not reassured by your 'bemusement' that the Palace Pier (and always the Palace Pier) is doing all it can to protect the safety of its visitors. Your attitude is rather arrogant one might say. As the Palace Pier's owners will know all too well, fires can start in the strangest and most unlikeliest of ways, like on the end of a non-accessible and derelict pier in Brighton about to undergo a massive restoration......... .....[/p][/quote]Pretty spot on, I'd say theargusissoinformative
  • Score: 10

2:56pm Sat 2 Aug 14

Goldenwight says...

Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements?

I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity.

Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own.
Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements? I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity. Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own. Goldenwight
  • Score: -28

3:36pm Sat 2 Aug 14

cookie_brighton says...

AND Cameron is giving £2 Million of our money to the owner to help restore the pier, whilst our pensioners have to survive on a pittance state pension........if the owner HAD installed sprinklers then damage would have been minimal...........su
rely an amusement arcade, housing a lot of people at one time should have had sprinklers.
AND Cameron is giving £2 Million of our money to the owner to help restore the pier, whilst our pensioners have to survive on a pittance state pension........if the owner HAD installed sprinklers then damage would have been minimal...........su rely an amusement arcade, housing a lot of people at one time should have had sprinklers. cookie_brighton
  • Score: 16

4:38pm Sat 2 Aug 14

a person says...

Goldenwight wrote:
Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements?

I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity.

Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own.
====================
====================
====================
=

Freedom of speech is still allowed , sometimes in this country .

Why should a serving Fire Officer be sacked for
speaking the truth.
Firemen are the ones risking their lives when called to a fire.
[quote][p][bold]Goldenwight[/bold] wrote: Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements? I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity. Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own.[/p][/quote]==================== ==================== ==================== = Freedom of speech is still allowed , sometimes in this country . Why should a serving Fire Officer be sacked for speaking the truth. Firemen are the ones risking their lives when called to a fire. a person
  • Score: 16

5:12pm Sat 2 Aug 14

getThisCoalitionOut says...

It's a shame that owners of these piers appear so happy to make lots of money out of them but refuse to install sprinkler systems. Does the law have to be changed to make these people get some common sense?

Expenses are all tax deductible aren't they - so it wouldn't cost them anything in fact.

This shows they are arrogant indeed.

I won't be going on any more piers ever again.
It's a shame that owners of these piers appear so happy to make lots of money out of them but refuse to install sprinkler systems. Does the law have to be changed to make these people get some common sense? Expenses are all tax deductible aren't they - so it wouldn't cost them anything in fact. This shows they are arrogant indeed. I won't be going on any more piers ever again. getThisCoalitionOut
  • Score: 3

6:40pm Sat 2 Aug 14

firemanste says...

Goldenwight wrote:
Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements?

I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity.

Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own.
its thanks to the likes of this guy that you get told feedback and dont have to read between the lines.yours and my taxes are now being given to a private business that has no right to this 2 million pounds.but mr cameron wants you to put the tories in the hot seat at the next election.
[quote][p][bold]Goldenwight[/bold] wrote: Why is a serving Fire Officer making these statements? I trust that he will be dismissed immediately for breaching confidentiallity. Whistleblower or now, he had no cause to make these statements other than to further his own.[/p][/quote]its thanks to the likes of this guy that you get told feedback and dont have to read between the lines.yours and my taxes are now being given to a private business that has no right to this 2 million pounds.but mr cameron wants you to put the tories in the hot seat at the next election. firemanste
  • Score: 2

11:35pm Sat 2 Aug 14

Max Ripple says...

Surely it can't be the case that Mr Cameron knows that he has the potential ongoing support of the residents of Eastbourne when it comes to the next election? If he helps to restore their pier.....
Surely he can't be that cynical.....can he?........
Surely it can't be the case that Mr Cameron knows that he has the potential ongoing support of the residents of Eastbourne when it comes to the next election? If he helps to restore their pier..... Surely he can't be that cynical.....can he?........ Max Ripple
  • Score: 2

9:44am Sun 3 Aug 14

Youlikemyjugs says...

Absolute scandal! Little less than I expected, however.

Yet, no doubt the begging bowls will still be out for the tax payers to reimburse the uninsured, criminal and stupid...
Absolute scandal! Little less than I expected, however. Yet, no doubt the begging bowls will still be out for the tax payers to reimburse the uninsured, criminal and stupid... Youlikemyjugs
  • Score: 1

10:05am Sun 3 Aug 14

brightonbunny says...

getThisCoalitionOut wrote:
It's a shame that owners of these piers appear so happy to make lots of money out of them but refuse to install sprinkler systems. Does the law have to be changed to make these people get some common sense?

Expenses are all tax deductible aren't they - so it wouldn't cost them anything in fact.

This shows they are arrogant indeed.

I won't be going on any more piers ever again.
Errm...I hope you don't run your own business - just because a cost is tax deductible don't mean it doesn't cost anything!

If you pay 20% corporation tax as a limited company, then "tax deductible" means just that. You don't pay 20% tax on the profit you made to spend on the item. You still have to find the other 80% of the cost.

Legally defined fire risk assessments are just that - assessment of risk. There is no such thing a "common sense", as everyone's view of this is different.

They may contain advice but not all is necessary legally enforcible advice. Some will be. Fire alarms are legally required premises dependent on a number of factors including flooor area, number of occupants etc , but the means of tackling fires comes down to details of risk and likelihood of occurrence. That's why you have different types of extinguisher/fie suppression systems for different places.

Should you be installing a £000's worth of sprinkler system in your home in case it catches fire? No, that would be silly. But, have you got a working smoke alarm and a fire extinguisher handy? That would be advisable, but only legally required if your house was built or re-wred in the past few years you must have alarms in kitchenand living areas linked to the mains supply.

It all comes down to cost vs risk in the end. None of this is free and any extra cost incurred simpy gets passed down to the customer in the end.
[quote][p][bold]getThisCoalitionOut[/bold] wrote: It's a shame that owners of these piers appear so happy to make lots of money out of them but refuse to install sprinkler systems. Does the law have to be changed to make these people get some common sense? Expenses are all tax deductible aren't they - so it wouldn't cost them anything in fact. This shows they are arrogant indeed. I won't be going on any more piers ever again.[/p][/quote]Errm...I hope you don't run your own business - just because a cost is tax deductible don't mean it doesn't cost anything! If you pay 20% corporation tax as a limited company, then "tax deductible" means just that. You don't pay 20% tax on the profit you made to spend on the item. You still have to find the other 80% of the cost. Legally defined fire risk assessments are just that - assessment of risk. There is no such thing a "common sense", as everyone's view of this is different. They may contain advice but not all is necessary legally enforcible advice. Some will be. Fire alarms are legally required premises dependent on a number of factors including flooor area, number of occupants etc , but the means of tackling fires comes down to details of risk and likelihood of occurrence. That's why you have different types of extinguisher/fie suppression systems for different places. Should you be installing a £000's worth of sprinkler system in your home in case it catches fire? No, that would be silly. But, have you got a working smoke alarm and a fire extinguisher handy? That would be advisable, but only legally required if your house was built or re-wred in the past few years you must have alarms in kitchenand living areas linked to the mains supply. It all comes down to cost vs risk in the end. None of this is free and any extra cost incurred simpy gets passed down to the customer in the end. brightonbunny
  • Score: 0

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