Publication - Research and analysis

Fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes consultation: analysis of responses

Published: 18 Mar 2018

Analysis of written responses to a consultation on fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes.

Fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes consultation: analysis of responses



1. On 14 June 2017, a major fire spread rapidly through Grenfell Tower, a 24 storey residential high rise building in London. In the wake of this tragedy, in which 71 people lost their lives, the Scottish Government established a Ministerial Working Group to oversee a review of building and fire safety regulatory frameworks, in order to help ensure that people are safe in Scotland's buildings, and to provide reassurance to residents and communities about their safety.

2. As part of this work, the Group agreed that a consultation on fire and smoke alarms should be prioritised. This had originally been intended for consultation later in 2017/18 as part of a wider consideration of condition issues leading from proposals raised through the Common Housing Quality Standard Forum.

3. The Consultation on Fire and Smoke Alarms in Scottish Homes opened on 8 September 2017 and closed on 1 December 2017.

4. It invited views on a range of issues including:

  • Current standards.
  • Potential changes to standards.
  • Costs, Timescale and Compliance; and
  • Carbon Monoxide Detectors.

Respondent Profile

5. In total, there were 122 responses to the consultation, of which 63 were from organisations and 59 from individuals.

6. Respondents were assigned to respondent groupings in order to enable analysis of any differences or commonalities across or within the various different types of organisations and individuals that responded.

7. A list of all those organisations that submitted a response to the consultation and agreed to have their name published is included in Appendix 1.

Table 2: Respondent Groups

Housing Association 17
Local Authority 13
Lettings / residential lettings / property management 7
Residents association / tenant participation 7
Fire risk / Safety consultant 6
Other ( e.g. charities / health / professional organisations / manufacturer) 13
Total organisations 63
Individuals 59
Total respondents 122

8. As Table 2 shows, the two largest organisation sub-groups were housing associations and local authorities.


9. Responses to the consultation were submitted using the Scottish Government consultation platform Citizen Space, or by email or hard copy.

10. It should be borne in mind that the number responding at each question is not always the same as the number presented in the respondent group table. This is because not all respondents addressed all questions. This report indicates the number of respondents who commented at each question.

11. Some of the consultation questions contained closed, tick-boxes with specific options to choose from. Where respondents did not follow the questions but mentioned clearly within their text that they supported one of the options, these have been included in the relevant counts.

12. The researchers examined all comments made by respondents and noted the range of issues mentioned in responses, including reasons for opinions, specific examples or explanations, alternative suggestions or other comments. Grouping these issues together into similar themes allowed the researchers to identify whether any particular theme was specific to any particular respondent group or groups.

13. When considering group differences however, it must also be recognised that where a specific opinion has been identified in relation to a particular group or groups, this does not indicate that other groups did not share this opinion, but rather that they simply did not comment on that particular point.

14. While the consultation gave all who wished to comment an opportunity to do so, given the self-selecting nature of this type of exercise, any figures quoted here cannot be extrapolated to a wider population outwith the respondent sample.

15. A small number of verbatim comments from those who gave permission for their responses to be made public have been used in the report to illustrate themes or to provide extra detail for some specific points.