Property managers fined for fire failings
HARPER STONE Property Ltd was prosecuted and fined £30,000 after a London Fire Brigade (LFB) investigation following a 2016 fire.
The Negotiator reported on LFB’s prosecution of the company over a property in Palmers Green, which suffered a fire in August 2016. The fire in the four storey apartment block’s common stairwell took hold on the ground floor, and spread to the third floor, ‘preventing residents from leaving via the main stars’. There were no injuries or deaths, but the ‘close call’ for 20 residents saw one who ‘had to be rescued’ by LFB from a ‘window sill’.
After the fire, LFB inspected the property and found several breaches of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, including that the company had ‘not assessed what aspects of the premises might pose a threat to the safety of tenants’; that there were ‘no emergency lights in the stairwell or common hallways’; and that the flat entrances ‘had not been fitted with fire doors’.
The company was fined and ordered to pay costs of £30,000 having pleaded guilty to the breaches, and LFB assistant commissioner for fire safety Dan Daly commented: ‘There was a fire risk assessment carried out for this premises but those responsible for the building’s management had failed to act on its findings.
‘There’s no excuse for leaving people’s safety to chance, especially when information is so readily available to those with responsibility for safety in buildings to understand what their duties are and ensure they comply with the law.’