July 18, 2014: update on flat 12 Curran House repairs and renovations.
The flat has now been rewired, the full rewire took 3 1/2 days to complete. The Electrical contractors did the very best they could, however the limits to which they can feed wires through the floors/walls was hampered by the kitchen units being installed over conduits which affected other areas that as well. As a consequence loss of space in cupboards. And conduits were put in when wires could not be pulled through. At first they are unsightly. And just like other people I have to live with it.
The inspection by the supervisor after the installation was perfunctory and superficial. I don't have a problem with the inspection if that is what it was meant to be. However, as the system was previously assessed by professionals as in need of rewiring, I would have thought part of the inspection would include an assessment and testing of the system which had been installed. So as far as I know, the electrical installation has not been signed off, so it is not certified or certificated in anyway.
I also understand that the main contractor employs subcontractors to complete the work on an ad hoc basis wherever they can get access. There is no accountability in this process as far as I can see, except of course for the TMO. The contractors were very affable, hard-working and did the job specified. It does not mean that the job has been done correctly and to the standards required by law, because it has not been tested.
2. Walk-in shower floor and leaks
Currently Keith Noble is overseeing the issue with the walk-in shower in my flat, which seems to be leaking into flat six below. As this issue has been going on for several years, and that previous surveyors from the TMO, who have valiantly argued that the walk-in shower is perfectly all right for a least a couple of years, it seems to me that the walk-in shower in my flat, not only seems to be an ongoing problem, it has become very expensive.
For several months in 2013, due to holidays, getting the incorrect resources/replacement parts, unqualified people trying to do a job they are not able to do, last year was particularly difficult for a disabled person like me and the conditions I have. Some of which are caused by stress, distress and anxiety. The complaints I've made and shared with Robert Black, Nick Paget Brown, Tim Rees and everybody else has failed to yield any response. I was interviewed yesterday about the responses that I have received from the council and the TMO, and I suggested that the best word to use was "indolent “and to elaborate the word is described with these synonyms "lazy, idle, slothful, loafing, work-shy, shiftless, apathetic, lackadaisical, inactive, inert, lifeless, sluggish, lethargic, listless, languid, torpid, slow, slow-moving, dull, plodding; slack, lax, remiss, negligent, good-for-nothing; informal bone idle." Of course I could be wrong?
3. Gas boiler bar pressure: the T Brown engineer who has been coming regularly to up the bar pressure in the gas boiler, suggested that I might try reminding the repairs department about the leak which may be in the system. And that the solution to the problem is a solution which can be put in the system to repair pinhole leaks. I don't know why this issue is ongoing because a very affable man from T Brown said he would get the job done. Unfortunately, whatever the solution may be, available on Amazon prime with next day delivery, is eluding the company presently.
4. Repair to kitchen window: I'm delighted to report that after several months of waiting for new parts, the kitchen window winder and the kitchen window are now repaired.
5. Pest control: I'm saddened and yet accepting that as a consequence of the rewiring, the mouse runs are now open again. I am sure the pest control officer will be around in the near future to put down more bait. All the work done to pest proof or mouse proof is to no avail.
6. Damaged carpet: when taking out and installing the third new walk-in shower floor, the shower floor engineer managed to get some sort of bitumen type substance on my carpets in the hallway outside the walk-in shower. And also managed to get same substance further down the corridor to the kitchen, and also in the WC on the linoleum.
7. Damaged draining board: although I'm delighted that my window winder in the kitchen now works, the first engineer knelt hard and bent the draining board. Fortunately for me Mr Noble had managed to get somebody in to bash out and then reseal the draining board. Although I advised the window winding engineer that the draining board would not take the weight of a human, after they had gone, having fixed my window winder, unfortunately the draining board was damaged yet again, and it does not drain properly and the drawer beneath will not open correctly.
Damage to property which is owned by the TMO RBKC seems to be ongoing.
Damage to my carpet
Time served by me waiting for repairs, which now is in the months, and years, it seems to me that indolent is a good description of how the TMO RBKC operate. I like all the people who come here, they are affable and try to do what they can with what they have. Unfortunately all the reasons for the current problems are managerial, operations systems and procedures which do not work in the way intended.
What to do? My job is to report and share what is going on. It is not my job to have to bring matters to your attention which ought to be routine and regularly resolved.
In a commercial world, the conduct of the council and TMO would not be acceptable.
We can love people, like people and even get to know people when they come and do what they can with the tools that they are given. And this is an expression I use quite a lot: "I can like and love people, at the same time I can hate their behaviour."
Complaints department: whenever I have tried to get some understanding and sense of what will happen, the complaints department start that process with a 10 day to reply policy. I can imagine there is a 10 day lag because if I am experiencing these problems, I'm sure I'm not the only one. Until of course the worst case scenario happens: service users believe that the council and the TMO are useless and simply don't care. Once that is firmly established as a principal in the service user, the TMO and RBKC continue to be indolent. Of course I could be wrong?
I am truly disappointed and feel very let down by the ongoing repairs never seemingly ending. And that renovations are simply not followed up in the way any commercial organisation would need to as a matter of compliance. And the health and safety issues…?
I'm not sure how accountabilities and responsibilities work within the TMO and the RBKC. At the same time I do feel I ought to check with your ombudsman. In order for me to do this I do need to know who I ought to identify as responsible and set a process in motion which is acceptable under your systems and procedures which are very vague http://www.lgo.org.uk/