Danger! Contractors at (Hot) Work!

Got the builders in?  This greatly increases the risks of fire and water damage to your building and collections and services.  And “hot work” activities such as the use of blowtorches or welding equipment are particularly risky.

Blowtorch from xlibber's flickr stream (licence CC BY 2.0)
From xlibber’s flickr stream (licence CC BY 2.0)

Two major fires in heritage organisations in recent weeks graphically illustrate this point. Fortunately no-one was hurt as a result of either incident.  Both fires appear to have started accidentally during hot work by contractors on the roof.  I wish the staff and users of both services all the very best in dealing with the aftermath of these horrible events.

The National Library of WalesFire investigation report (note that the construction of the roof meant that the workers and the library staff couldn’t extinguish the flames in the usual way).

The Cuming Museum and other Southwark Council servicesArticle in the Museums Journal and interesting comment about apparent similarity to the devastating 1989 fire at Uppark House.


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