Urgent work required after inspection discovers dangerous windows in Stevenage flat

THOUSANDS of pounds is to be spent on housing improvement work after it was discovered that windows in a tower block possess a ‘serious’ risk of harm.

An inspection by an environmental health officer at a flat in Brent Court, Stevenage, found that restrictors on the windows did not meet with current recommendations limiting their opening to less than 100mm and were deemed a ‘category one’ hazard - the highest risk - under the housing health and safety rating system.

All hazards classified under category one are considered to be ‘serious’, according to the system.

Stevenage Homes, who manage and maintain Stevenage Borough Council’s housing stock, will inspect all of the windows from the second floor up of its 75 blocks of three storeys and above beginning this month, at a cost of approximately �103,000. The project is expected to be completed by March 2011.

Brent O’Halloran, director of property services at Stevenage Homes, said: “If any windows are found not to have working restrictors they will be fitted with new key operated restrictors.

“Leaseholders are responsible for the maintenance of the windows in their flats and as such the cost of fitting any restrictors that are required, however all leaseholders may opt out of having the work if they choose to.

“This has been made clear in the letters and other information sent to leaseholders about the project.”