ESC tables home safety in Scotland

ESC tables home safety in Scotland

The Electrical Safety Council’s (ESC) parliamentary roundtable on the theme of improving home safety in Scotland, hosted by Clare Adamson MSP, will take place at Holyrood, on 25th April.

Each year in the UK, 70 people are killed by an electrical accident in the home and 350,000 sustain a serious injury from an electric shock[1]. Government data also shows that Scottish homes are at greater risk from electrical fires than the rest of Great Britain[2].

Responses to the Scottish government’s recent consultation on sustainable housing – Homes that don’t cost the Earth – emphasised the need for effective minimum standards to be extended to the private rented sector (PRS). Three quarters of respondents supported the idea of a single minimum standard to cover the condition of all properties, including the PRS. Currently, standards for social housing are considerably more developed than those imposed on the PRS.

‘With the rapid expansion in the PRS and research revealing that over a third of landlords have failed to carry out repairs or deal with poor conditions[3], we believe that everyone – regardless of the type of tenancy they hold – should enjoy the same safety standards,’ explained Emma Apter, ESC head of communications.

‘The Scottish government has taken significant steps to improve housing standards but to support and develop this process, we need further measures to enhance the safety of tenants in privately rented accommodation,’ added Emma. ‘In particular, the ESC believes that regular, compulsory checks – by a registered electrician – on the electrical wiring and appliances provided in private sector housing, is essential.’

Committed to working in partnership, the ESC has established the roundtable to bring together a range of stakeholders to help progress Scotland’s aim of sustainable – and safe – housing for all.

Clare Adamson MSP commented, ‘I am very pleased to continue my involvement with the ESC and the excellent work they are doing. I am especially pleased to be able to host the round table discussion in the Scottish Parliament which will focus on improving home safety. I am very hopeful that this collaborative approach will bring real progress.’

[1] ESC Core Data Set

[1] Secondary analysis of data from Fire Statistics Great Britain, 2010/11 Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG).

[1] Data supplied by Shelter 2011.

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