The owner of a Bed & Breakfast business was recently ordered to pay a substantial fine and costs as the result of breaches of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (‘the Order’).
Amandeep Murria of Kangs Solicitors sets out the circumstances.
If you are being investigated, or anticipate any form of prosecution, for any alleged regulatory offences, including those relating to fire safety, it is imperative that you seek immediate expert guidance.
For an initial no obligation discussion, please call our Team at any of our offices detailed below:
The Circumstances | Kangs Fire Safety Regulations Solicitors
Officers of the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service conducted an inspection of the defendant’s premises following a fire in 2021 and discovered that:
- no risk assessment had been carried out at the premises;
- the fire detection and warning system was sub-standard;
- escape routes serving the sleeping accommodation were not adequately protected;
- there was a lack of emergency escape lighting;
Following a subsequent investigation, which revealed a failure to review the fire safety provisions at the premises, an Enforcement Notice was served.
The Relevant Law | Kangs Regulatory Solicitors
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005
- The purpose of the Order is to simplify, rationalise and consolidate UK fire legislation and to shift the emphasis of fire prevention and the reduction of risk to employers/businesses from the fire authorities.
- Prior to the Order, UK fire safety was covered by a multitude of different legislation.
- From the 1 October 2005, Fire Certificates are no longer issued and businesses are required to carry out their own fire risk assessments.
Categories of Premises Affected By The Order
- Offices and retail premises,
- Factories and warehouse storage premises,
- All premises where the main use is to provide sleeping accommodation, e.g. hotels, guest houses, B&Bs, holiday accommodation and the common areas of flats and maisonettes. (Single private dwellings are excluded),
- Residential care premises,
- Educational premises,
- Small and medium places of assembly,
- Large places of assembly,
- Theatres, cinemas and similar premises,
- Open air events and venues,
- Healthcare premises,
- Transport premises and facilities,
- Animal premises and stables,
- Means of escape for disabled people.
The Court Proceedings | Kangs Health & Safety Solicitors
At the Hearing before the Magistrates’ Court, the following financial penalties were imposed:
- a total fine of £12,407,
- costs amounting to £4,537,
- a surcharge of £190.
A Chief Fire Officer said:
‘Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service’s vision is all about working together to make people safer. Wherever possible, we want to work with local business owners to ensure they have the right fire safety advice and understand their responsibilities in keeping their guests and visitors safe. However, when premises do not comply and we believe members of the public are at risk, we will not hesitate to take action in order to enforce fire safety regulations.’
How Can We Help? | Kangs Health and Safety & Fire Safety Solicitors
Kangs Solicitors has a wealth of knowledge and experience in dealing with all matters of Health and Safety Law.
Our Team provides advice and assistance throughout the entire criminal process, from the initial intervention by the relevant body through to enforcement, interview under caution and ultimately the defence of any ensuing criminal prosecution.
The Courts are not afraid to impose severe penalties in recognition of the seriousness of individuals and companies flouting Fire Safety Regulations.
Who Can I Contact For Help? | Kangs National Criminal Defence Solicitors
Please feel free to contact our team through any of the following who will be happy to provide you with some initial advice and assistance.