Kier Stoke Strikes Again

Kier Stoke have done it again. Another triumph. This time it concerns the fire door replacement programme for the high rise flats in the city. It was clear from the outset that the doors were of a poor quality and were shoddily installed. Worse, they were of a type unsuitable for use as a front door as they were too flimsy, so were not secure. (I’m sure the Leader would not want such a door to his house). Many residents complained about this, but the Council’s response was to dismiss all such complaints: we are doing this for your own good so to complain means you are against fire safety. Just how patronising is that? Some residents refused to allow access for the doors to be fitted, and reiterated their concerns over security. The Council’s response to this was not to treat the complainants as adults and discuss the issues sensibly. No, they threatened to evict anyone who refused.

Thankfully, some residents refused to be intimidated. They made formal complaints and after two years of wrangling, the Council finally deigned to order an inspection of the work done. The report when it came was damning. A high level of defects were found which meant that the doors were not safe. The report can be found here.

The Council admitted to The Sentinel on 1st August 2013 that mistakes had been made and they made a half-hearted, grudging apology. Well, that does not go far enough. Numerous questions still need to be answered:

  1. The report was delivered to the Council in March 2013 yet they did not write to the residents until August 2013. Why the delay?
  2. Concerns over security have still not been addressed. Why?
  3. The Council’s letter to residents states that Kier are to carry out remedial works. Given that Kier messed it up, why are they still involved?
  4. Given that the doors are safety critical (which the Council was so keen to remind us of) and that they do not meet the required standard, have any staff been disciplined for this monumental failure? And if not, why?
  5. Just how much of our money they have wasted through their arrogance?

Stoke-on-Trent City Council have hardly covered themselves in glory over this. They should have been grown up enough to listen to their tenants and admit their failures far earlier. This whole sorry affair has further lowered the reputation of an organisation I was once proud to work for. Let us now hope that fire doors are fitted that are both fit for purpose and sturdy enough to be secure. Sadly, I have no confidence that this will happen.

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One Response to “Kier Stoke Strikes Again”

  1. The Saga of The Fire Doors | The Elias Tarrant blog Says:

    […] from my earlier blog piece on this, I made a formal complaint to the Council, addressed to Leader Pervez, CEO Van de Laarschott and […]

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