Client: Keningtons LLP
It’s not often we are requested to undertake fire damage restoration, and we hope that this is because we take the matter of fire protection very seriously at Cre8tive Interiors. Fire protection is part of the Building Regulations which is something we need to be aware of in every project. We have worked on many projects that involve replacing fire doors (click here to see why we replaced the fire doors in Allied Computer Systems) or installing fire protection to a mezzanine floor (click here if you have a mezzanine floor).
We were contacted by Keningtons LLP after something caught fire in the bin of the ladies’ toilet within one of the offices they manage. Luckily it was put out quickly because it was contained in a small space, but the fire damage caused by such a small fire was frightening. Working with Keningtons LLP and the insurance company we were tasked with restoring the toilets to the original condition.
At the first visit we could see immediately that the fire had caused a great deal of damage despite only being a small fire and being extinguished quickly.
The fire started in a small bin in one of the toilets which had completely melted along with half of the toilet seat and the towel dispenser that was above it. The suspended ceiling had given way and collapsed and all of the insulation above was black from the smoke. The walls, floors, doors and even the appliances were coated in a thick layer of soot from the smoke. The fire damage wasn’t as extensive in the second toilet, where the door had obviously been closed, but there was still a lot of soot from the smoke. The smoke damage extended out into the hallways where it had coated the suspended ceiling and walls in layers of soot.
As we went through we took note of all the fire damaged areas that would need replacing.
- The vinyl flooring was melted in places.
- The toilet, soil pipe and boxing in was badly damaged.
- The plastic towel dispenser was destroyed.
- The walls were coated in a thick layer of soot.
- The appliances were very badly soiled from the smoke.
- The plastic grill in the door was melted and the doors and handles were all badly soiled.
- The suspended ceiling was destroyed and badly soiled in other areas.
- One light had completely melted, the others were badly soiled and the wiring needed replacing.
- Both of the skylights were black with soot.
- The extractor fans were badly damaged and the ducts were full of soot.
- The insulation above the ceiling was black along with the fire barriers.
- The walls and suspended ceiling in the hallway were all soiled from smoke.
Fire damage is absolutely devastating and extends much further than you would think. Smoke penetrates very small holes and spreads the soot everywhere which is difficult to get rid of.
View into the fire damaged toilets and storage area.
The first toilet where the fire broke out.
The suspended ceiling and skylight damaged by the fire.
The appliances in the storage area.
The second toilet was more smoke damaged than fire damaged.
The lighting and electrics had all been damaged by the fire.
The walls and ceiling in the hallway were damaged by the smoke.
The soot from the smoke covered the skylight even in the hallway.
Fire Damage Restoration in Progress
One of the main things we had to consider when restoring the fire damage was how to minimize the spread of soot. The office was on the third floor above a high street so the rubbish had to be transported a considerable distance just to remove it from the premises. We used plenty of floor protection to make a safe route to the closest exit at the front of the building; everything then had to be carried around a side alley to the skip at the rear. The flooring, ceiling, insulation and any badly fire damaged items were removed first using plastic rubble sacks. The toilets were then given a deep clean and a layer of paint first which stopped any more soot being spread.
Temporary site lighting until the electrics were replaced.
The old suspended ceiling was removed.
New electric cables and ducts were installed.
Pipework was repaired and boxing was rebuilt.
Re-decorating in such a cramped space with only site lighting was difficult.
Suspended ceiling with LED lights.
Suspended ceiling replaced in the hallway.
Suspended ceiling replaced in the toilets.
New LED lights installed in the toilets.
PIR occupancy sensors were installed in the toilets.
The carpet in the hallway was replaced.
New toilets and sinks were installed like-for-like.
Anti-slip vinyl flooring was installed throughout the toilets.
New toilets and sinks were installed like-for-like.
Extractor fans were replaced and installed.
Completed Project Photographs
The insurance company specified replacements that were like-for-like because this was a fire damage restoration project. We normally prefer to install modern dual-flush toilets and more efficient hand dryers. The tenants within the building asked us to install LED lights in the toilets and hallway separately for energy efficiency. We were happy to do this as it is much better for the environment and they paid the balance on this.
The toilets look brighter and cleaner than ever before. With all new sanitaryware and LED lighting and being freshly decorated we have not only restored the fire damage, but made the toilets better than before.
Finished view into the toilets.
The second toilet ready for use again.
New sink tap and pipework.
One of the toilets with new tiles.
New bin and door grille installed.
Summary on Fire Damage Restoration
- Using floor protection and common sense we can reduce the spread of soot into the office.
- We look past the obvious fire damage and figure the true extent of the damage.
- We work hard to find like-for-like replacements to match the original fixtures.
- When replacing items we can use this as an opportunity to upgrade for energy efficient options.
- Proper site lighting and equipment allows us to work in the space straight away and get it clean before the electricians replace the wiring.
Questions on Fire Damage Restoration or Fire Protection
If you are not sure about whether you have adequate fire protection then we will be more than happy to offer honest advice. The safety of your staff is very important to us, please give us a call on 01380 738844.