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March 5, 2010

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Hotel company convicted of fire safety offences

A company that owned a London hotel has been ordered to pay more than £21,000 in fines and costs after pleading guilty to six offences under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

Malfax Investments Limited, which owned the Averard Hotel on Lancaster Gate in Bayswater, was sentenced this week at Westminster Magistrates Court.

The hotel was inspected by fire safety officers in April 2009, when they found a number of failings including inadequate fire detection and alarm system, problems with the external means of escape and inadequate and defective fire doors. As a result of these deficiencies, the officers issued an enforcement notice detailing the issues and when they needed to be resolved.

The company disclosed a fire risk assessment that was prepared in January 2008. Although it detailed a number of failings and advised steps they needed to take to address them, said London Fire Brigade, the company failed to act on the findings and implement any of the actions required.

The hotel closed shortly after the enforcement noticed was issued.

“The general public should feel safe from fire when they are staying at a hotel and the responsible person must make sure their premises comply with the regulations,” said London Fire Brigade’s assistant commissioner for fire safety regulation, Steve Turek.“All premises owners and operators must undertake a fire safety risk assessment. Although this was completed in this case, it is no use if the responsible person does not act on its findings.”
 

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