Stay Put Strategy
Find out what the Stay Put Strategy means and what you should do in the unlikely event of a fire.
According to the National Fire Chiefs Council, if there’s a fire in another part of the building, you’re usually safer staying inside your home, unless the heat or smoke from the fire is affecting you. This is because flats are constructed as individual compartments which are separated from the rest of the block. This is known as ‘compartmentation’, with each flat’s walls, floors, ceilings and doors designed to provide appropriate protection. However, if there is a fire in your own flat, you should leave (see instructions below).
If you’re aware of a fire elsewhere in your building and you ‘stay put’, you should still immediately call 999 for advice and to make sure the emergency services have been notified.
What to do if a fire breaks out in your flat
- If you discover a fire or hear the fire alarm, make sure everyone inside is aware and immediately leaves the flat
- Never tackle a fire yourself - leave it to the fire and rescue service
- Don’t waste time investigating what’s happened or rescuing valuables
- If there’s smoke, keep low to the floor where the air is clearer
- Close all doors inside your flat if it’s safe to do so
- When everybody has evacuated your flat, make sure the flat entrance door is closed behind you
- Use the escape plan that you’ve practised that leads you to the ground floor and out of the building. If you can get to the stairwell, this should be a safe route to get out.
- When you get outside the building, call 999 ask for the Fire Brigade, giving the building address
- When the Fire Brigade arrives, tell them where the fire is
- Do not go back inside the building until the Fire Brigade has put the fire out and they tell you it is safe to return home.
What to do if a fire breaks out in another part of the building
- The building is designed to contain a fire in the flat where it starts, which means it will usually be safe for you to stay in your own flat
- If smoke or heat is affecting your home, leave immediately if it is safe to do so
- If the fire service tell you to leave, get out immediately
- To call the fire service: Dial 999
- When the operator answers, give your telephone number and ask for fire
- When the fire service reply, give the address where the fire is
- Do not end the call until the fire service has repeated the address correctly
- If your smoke detectors are activated by smoke from a fire somewhere else in the building or if you feel the fire is putting you at risk, then leave immediately following the instructions above
- Use the escape plan you’ve practised that leads you to the ground floor and out of the building. If the corridor outside your flat is filled with smoke then stay in your flat and call 999. If you can get to the stairwell this should be a safe route.