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October 12, 2023

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Prosecutions

Cornwall takeaway fined £37k for fire safety breaches

A company operating as a Chinese takeaway, which also had rooms on the ground and first floor of the premises for employee accommodation, has been fined £37,000 for fire safety breaches. 

Fire Safety Officers from Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) attended the property in Callington, Cornwall, in January earlier this year, and “identified significant and serious fire safety breaches throughout“.

Immediate action to prevent anyone sleeping in the premises was taken following the inspection.

A hearing at Bodmin Magistrates Court resulted in SF Callinton Limited to pay a total of £30,000 in fines, £5,000 towards costs and a £2,000 victim surcharge after pleading guilty to five offences under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

Offences included:

  • Failure to take such general fire precautions as were reasonably required in the circumstances to ensure that the premises were safe
  • Failure to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to which relevant persons were exposed for the purpose of identifying the general fire precautions
  • Failure to ensure that the premises were, to the appropriate extent, equipped with fire detectors and alarms
  • Failure to ensure that in the event of danger, it was possible for persons to evacuate the premises as quickly and as safely as possible in that there was an inadequate means of escape
  • Failure to ensure that the premises and any facilities, equipment or devices were subject to a suitable system of maintenance and were maintained in an efficient state and effective working order and good repair

Kathryn Billing, Chief Fire Officer for CFRS, said: “I hope this case serves as a reminder to all businesses that, if you provide sleeping accommodation, you must ensure fire safety rules are obeyed. These include providing adequate means of escape, a suitable fire warning and detection system, and ensuring that all fire safety provisions are adequate and regularly maintained.

“My team will investigate any breaches, and we will take action to ensure no one is put at unnecessary risk.”

This article was first published by the Fire Protection Association

 

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