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July 31, 2012

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Care home fined for fire safety breaches

The owners of a care home in Kendray, Barnsley, have had to pay more than £11,000 in fines and costs for breaching fire safety legislation.

Park Care Ltd, the owners of Park Grange nursing home, pleaded guilty to three breaches of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 on 19 July at Sheffield Magistrates Court. The breaches were a failure to put in place suitable fire emergency procedures, failing to rectify defective fire doors, and a failure to carry out a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment.

Officers from South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service highlighted the problems in August 2011, and then issued an enforcement notice on 1 September 2011. The decision to prosecute was taken after the company failed to comply with the enforcement notice.

Terry Guthrie of South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said:

“These breaches were so serious that had there been a fire at the home there was a real danger that residents would have been seriously injured or worse.

“Care homes are responsible for the safety of vulnerable residents and they need to adhere to fire safety regulations. Where we find these regulations aren’t followed we will take swift action.”

Roger Shipley, a director of Park Care Ltd said:

“We have always prided ourselves in being an excellent care home. We were unaware of the change of stance of the fire service from advising to enforcing and we feel we were given little support during the process. I feel that the only way to avoid such action in future is to employ fire safety professionals to advise us.”
 

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