11/12/2023

Ensuring Health & Safety inspections through access injunctions

someone handing someone else a set of keys in front of a brick wall

The health and safety of our residents is our top priority so it is vital that gas, electrical fixed wire, CO, smoke detection and stock condition surveys are carried out.  

Failure to gain access to residents’ home to conduct these tests or inspections in a timely manner poses significant risks, ranging from short circuits, fire and carbon monoxide leaks. Hightown has obtained a number of access injunctions to ensure residents comply with these Health & Safety checks.

Hightown’s Building Safety Team has encountered challenges when some residents have persistently refused to grant access for crucial safety inspections. In response, as a responsible housing association, Hightown obtained a number of access injections against these non-compliant residents.

The tenancy agreement signed by all tenants upon moving into Hightown homes, includes a comprehensive access clause.  This clause confirms that residents must allow Hightown’s employees or contractors acting on behalf of the association access at reasonable times and with reasonable notice for health and safety inspections, including servicing of gas installations, fixed wire electrics, fire doors and fire detection.

When residents failed to adhere to the agreed terms and conditions, Hightown had no choice but to seek legal intervention through access Injunctions - where the courts allowed forced entry into the properties. Not only were the residents inconvenienced but they also occurred additional costs for court fees and lock replacement.

Whilst most residents cooperate with Hightown’s Health & safety compliance to ensure the safety of their homes, a small, yet concerning number persist in putting themselves at risk by refusing access.  The implication of such non-compliance also impacts other residents and the local community.

Access injunctions play a crucial role in reinforcing the importance of compliance with health and safety checks. By adhering to the terms outlined in the tenancy agreement, residents contribute to a safer living environment for themselves and their neighbours.