Fire Risk Assessments

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 became law in 2006

This firmly placed the responsibility for fire safety in buildings upon the owners and business managers. Ignorance of the risk and lack of provision for protection is no defence. Hefty fines and imprisonment await the unwary. The ’Fire Safety Act 2021’and ‘Fire Safety (England) 2022’ have also become law.

Be wary – BE VERY WARY

Here are some examples of real prosecutions. They are all very ‘dated’ so the financial penalties now could be considerably higher.

Example 1

The Penhallow Hotel, Newquay. Cornwall

Fire –  August 2007

Deaths – 3  (Fire safety breaches not linked to deaths)

Fine – £40,000   – Breach of Article 13(1)  Fire alarm system sub standard

Fine £40,000 – Breach of Article 9  –  No FRA in place, No Self-closing devices on bedroom doors, Stairway glazing not Fire proof

Plus £62,000 costs

Example 2

New Look, Oxford Street, London.

Fire – April 2007

Deaths – None     Injuries  – None

Fine – £250,000 – Breach of Article 9   –  FRA carried out by store employee resulting in missed discrepancies

Fine £120,000 – Breach of Article 21 – Policy on annual staff training not implemented resulting in public evacuation inadequacies

Plus costs of £136,000

Example 3

Housing Management Agent

1960’s conversion

Fire – June 2008 (within a flat)

Breach of Article 8  Electrical cupboards left unlocked and storage within

Breach of Article 11(1)  Means of escape inadequate

Breach of Article 13(1)a  Fire Alarm system inadequate

Managing Agent prosecuted as ‘Responsible Person’ Fine £100,000 + costs of £13,000

Head Leaseholder Prosecuted Fine £33,000 Plus costs of 6,440

Example 4

Extinguisher engineer carried out FRA for Two hotels

No fire occurs

Fire Brigade carries out routine inspection and issues prohibition notice

Landlord and Extinguisher engineer both prosecuted and imprisoned for 8 months

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