§ Mr. Soames
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the review of the Fire Precautions Act 1971 has been completed.
§ Mr. Brittan
My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland and I have today published a consultative document entitled "A Review of the Fire Precautions Act 1971". The document embodies proposals, formulated over several years within the machinery of the Central Fire Brigades Advisory Councils for England and Wales and for Scotland, for a modified system of fire precautions controls which would replace the fire certification arrangements of the current system with a statutory duty on the owners-occupiers of premises put to a designated use to achieve and maintain a reasonable standard of fire safety. We are most grateful to the organisations represented on the CFBACs for helping to bring this work to a successful conclusion in the publication of this document. I should, however, emphasise that the proposals in no sense represent final conclusions and my right hon. Friend and I will want to consider them again in the light of comments which are made on them. I have in particular, invited Mr. Justice Popplewell to consider the proposals in the context of his inquiry into the operation of the Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975 following the Bradford fire, so that any relevant conclusions can be taken into account.
Copies of the consultative document, on which written comments are invited by 31 December 1985, are being sent to fire authorities and to other interested bodies and individuals, and copies have also been placed in the Library of the House. Further copies can be obtained on request in writing to the Home Office Fire and Emergency Planning Department, Room 916, Home Office, 50 Queen Anne's Gate, London SW1H 9AT.