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Property managers’ 9 safety tips

As summer approaches, the Charles Cox Property Group want to provide you with vital information to help safeguard your property. It is crucial to understand and be familiar with standard safety measures and protocols in areas such as fire safety, asbestos management and storage of electronic motorised vehicles.  

One of the most important fire safety measures to implement within your property is a PEEP.  If you are with Charles Cox, our Property Managers and Compliance Officer will arrange this for you if it is not already in place.

What is a PEEP?  

PEEP (Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan) is a customised escape plan designed to aid individuals needing extra assistance during a general emergency evacuation from a building.  

During an emergency, such as a fire, ensuring the safe evacuation of all occupants is crucial. However, not all occupants may be able to evacuate safely without assistance. Therefore, it’s essential to have a plan in place for such situations.

A Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) aims to ensure that all individuals, regardless of their mobility or impairments, can safely evacuate the building in the event of an emergency. PEEPs come in two types: permanent PEEPs for those with lasting disabilities affecting their ability to evacuate independently and temporary PEEPs updated as the individual’s condition changes.  

Completing a PEEP is the responsibility of the managing agent, responsible person or nominated representative. Once completed, a copy should be provided to the local Fire Brigade.  

There is also a “Golden Thread” process for managing agents to ensure continuity of fire safety documents during handover processes between different managing agents to maintain life safety standards.  

Make sure e-bikes and e-scooters are safely stored and charged 

Do you or any of your tenants own an e-bike or an e-scooter? You may need to be aware of the essential safety measures to implement when storing these vehicles around a property. E-bikes and e-scooters are powered by large lithium-ion batteries, which can pose a severe fire risk or explosion in specific situations. Although they can be used safely, there have been several fires related to lithium-ion batteries in e-bikes and e-scooters, including those in conversion kits. Fortunately, there are regulations and recommendations that you and your tenants can adhere to to reduce the risk of malfunctions and address safety concerns related to the charging and storage of devices.

Safety tips for e-bike and e-scooter users:  

– Avoid obstructing escape routes with e-bikes and e-scooters; store them away from a main through route. For optimal safety, consider storing these items in a secure external location, such as a garage or shed.  

– Always use the correct charger to reduce the fire risk, and purchase an official charger from a reputable seller.  

– Refrain from modifying or tampering with your battery; adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions.  

– Converting pedal bikes into e-bikes using online DIY kits can be extremely hazardous and increase the fire risk. It is recommended to seek the assistance of a professional or competent individual for the conversion and to ensure the purchase of a battery from a trustworthy seller, avoiding second-hand options.  

– Verify that your battery and charger meet UK safety standards.  

– Be vigilant for signs indicating that the battery or charger is not functioning correctly, such as excess heat or changes in shape.  

– Allow the battery to cool before recharging. As batteries can generate heat during use, it is advisable to let them cool down before recharging, as they may become more prone to failure if overheated. If charging batteries indoors, please follow our guidelines for safe charging.  

– Disconnect the charger once the charging is complete. Always adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions for charging, and it is advisable not to leave it unattended while people are sleeping.  

– Install alarms in the vicinity where charging takes place.  

For more information, we recommend reading the guidance page ‘E-cycle and e-scooter batteries: managing fire risk for premises’.

Why BBQs on balconies pose a significant fire hazard

Barbecues, fire pits, patio heaters and chimeneas should not be used on a balcony as they present fire and carbon monoxide hazards. Flames, sparks and hot embers have the potential to cause fires and spread rapidly to other sections of the building. In the event of a fire, a balcony’s limited space can cause fire to spread quickly and make it difficult for residents to escape safely.

Instead, set up your barbecue on level ground away from combustible items like sheds, fences, or trees and not on a deck. Avoid lighting a barbecue in an enclosed area, and refrain from using accelerants to start the fire.

Adhere to the regulations and guidelines concerning the use of barbecues in residential areas, which are crucial for everyone’s safety.

Managing asbestos in buildings

– The duty to manage asbestos in buildings applies to all non-domestic premises such as factories or shops and the ‘common parts’ of multi-occupancy domestic premises like purpose-built flats.  

– This duty is outlined in the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012. The duty holder must assess the presence, quantity, location and condition of asbestos-containing materials (ACMs). They must presume materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence that they do not.   

– The individual or entity with the duty must maintain an up-to-date record or register of the location and condition of ACMs or presumed ACMs and develop an asbestos management plan to assess and address the risk. This plan must be implemented, monitored and reviewed at regular intervals.   

– Regular monitoring of the condition of any ACMs or suspected ACMs is essential, and information regarding their location and condition must be provided to individuals who may work on or disturb them, including emergency services.  

For more detailed guidance on complying with the duty to manage asbestos, the Approved Code of Practice: Managing and Working with Asbestos, available on the website, provides additional information.

Charles Cox Property Group can help you stay current with the legal requirements for your leasehold property. From fire risk assessments to asbestos surveys, we handle it all, carrying them out on your behalf and ensuring you meet the required standards.  

Contact us at or view our block management page to learn more about our services. 

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