After major breaches of fire safety regulations, a West London building owner has been prosecuted.
Circumstances of the Fire
Firefighters were called to a fire at a flat in August 2018. It was above a shop on Queensway in West London. They needed 70 firefighters and 10 fire engines to control the blaze. It also destroyed half of the four storey building. Two women were rescued from the building. They also required treatment for smoke inhalation at the scene.
Fire investigators examined the circumstances. They found that the building owner failed to carry out a fire risk assessment for the building. He also didn’t have adequate fire protection measures in the building. This meant that safe evacuation was not possible. There were also no fire alarm or smoke detection systems in place.
The building owner pleaded guilty to three breaches of the Fire Safety Order. He was sentenced to two months in prison, suspended for twelve months. £20,000 in fines was issued. Prosecution costs of £11,500 were also payable.
Following the prosecution, the Brigade’s Assistant Commissioner for Fire Safety commented. ‘Breathing apparatus crews who entered the building reported heavy smoke logging inside and they were unable to see anything but worked hard to tackle the blaze and prevented it spreading to other parts of the building, fortunately without any serious injuries.
‘Our inspectors found failings in the building which amounted to a serious breach of [the building owner’s] duties and showed a disregard of any proper fire safety measures and therefore a disregard for the safety of his tenants. Failings in fire safety measures also pose a heightened risk to firefighters who are already doing a dangerous job.
‘There’s no excuse for leaving people’s safety to chance, especially when information is so readily available to those with responsibility for safety in buildings to understand what their duties are and ensure they comply with the law.’
Remaining Compliant With Fire Safety
It’s vital that companies are following the correct rules and regulations when it comes to Health & Safety. It’s easy to gloss over your responsibilities as a company, but it is crucial to keeping your staff and even visitors to your site safe.
If you require assistance with Fire Risk Management, get in touch with our friendly team. They are highly qualified and happy to assist with your needs.
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