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Fire safety checks in Norwich Road area of Ipswich on July 5

PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 June 2016

Norwich Road, Ipswich.

Norwich Road, Ipswich.

Archant

Potential fire hazards at houses and businesses in the Norwich Road area of Ipswich will be identified and addressed next week.

Officials from Ipswich Borough Council (IBC) and the Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service will carry out the safety checks on Tuesday.

Flats above shops and restaurants will be targeted, as well as conditions in privately-rented housing.

The work is being carried out in response to the devastating blaze which tore through Sudbury town centre last September.

The fire, which destroyed heritage buildings, devastated businesses and left 20 people homeless, was ignited by an electrical item in the kitchen of a nail bar.

Councils in Suffolk are now carrying out safety work to improve fire prevention, detection and means of escape.

Neil MacDonald, housing portfolio-holder at IBC, said: “Teaming up with the fire service is a sensible step as we want to be proactive when it comes to ensuring that our buildings are safe and that tenants know what to do in the event of a fire.

“This is primarily about protection and education, although we will use enforcement if necessary – we will not take risks with people’s safety.”

Housing and fire chiefs will be in the town centre side of Norwich Road to give advice to residents and businesses from 10am to 5pm during the day of safety checks.

Twelve inspections are also planned on the day and the businesses, owners or tenants affected will receive a letter informing them of this.

Matthew Hicks, cabinet member for environment and public protection at Suffolk County Council, added: “We are delighted to be working with (IBC) to help spread important fire safety messages.”

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