John Green building, Bradford

Fire safety issues have been discovered after a fire broke out in the basement of the John Green Building, a high-rise in Bradford.

Local fire and rescue services were called to the scene on Bolton Road on Monday 6 June, where two cars were found on fire in the car park.

West Yorkshire Fire Authority condemned the John Green Building on the night of the fire after discovering a swathe of fire safety defects, resulting in the property being evacuated of residents who were placed in temporary accommodation by Bradford Council. They cannot return to their homes until the landlord of the high-rise addresses the discovered fire safety issues.

The prohibition notice states that there are “insufficient measures to reduce the risk of fire and spread of fire on the premises.”

The issues to be addressed include ensuring that all flat doors are capable of providing adequate fire resistance, that robust measures are in place to prevent the build-up of combustible materials on escape routes, and that the emergency lighting is working and functional at all times.

Chris Kemp, Senior Fire Protection Manager from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “People’s safety is our number one concern. While this was a relatively small fire, the fact it was in a high-rise residential building with existing fire safety concerns meant there was the potential for something much more serious to happen, this resulted in us having to take immediate action.

“We are continuing to work with the premises owners and managing agents to make sure safety issues in the building are put right. It is their responsibility to ensure this necessary work is carried out and certified before this building can be used again.”

Xavier Tikadar, resident of the building, said: “The fire alarm was always going off, and the brigade were always coming round, so I was worried that if there ever was a real fire, no one would think anything of it so I reported it, and that is what happened.

“We could see from the bottom on Monday that people were just opening their windows when the alarm was going off because they just thought it was someone that had burnt their toast again, so it was really scary.”

A Bradford Council spokesperson said: “Our Housing Options Service offered temporary accommodation to all affected households, but many made their arrangements. The offer of emergency temporary accommodation is still open to affected residents if they still require it.