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Whitby Restaurant Owner fined £17,500 for serious fire safety breaches

12th June 2013

On the 15th August 2012 North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service carried out a fire safety inspection of The Kam Thai Restaurant, 63-65 Church Street, Whitby.

During the inspection, Fire Safety Officers found a number of serious fire safety deficiencies regarding the accommodation provided for employees. This included a lack of fire detection and warning, lack of emergency lighting, blocked means of escape, inadequate fire separation and a lack of training of employees.

At Scarborough Magistrates Court on Friday 7th June 2013, Mr Azad Hussain, Director of Kam Thai Ltd, pleaded guilty to eight contraventions of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

Mr Hussain was fined £15,000 and ordered to pay £2500 in costs.

In sentencing Mr Hussain, the Magistrates said; “Regardless of the lack of knowledge of fire safety legislation we consider that it would have been obvious that the state of the premises posed a serious risk to those that were sleeping there. It is only by good fortune that there has not been a fire. Had there been (a fire) there would have been serious risk to life.

Ms Karen Galloway prosecuting stated that; “The Fire and Rescue Service’s decision to prosecute was not taken lightly and this measure is only taken in the most serious cases. The responsible person is always in a position of authority, their lack of actions should have been foreseeable to prevent, in the event of fire, persons being put at risk of death or injury. The contraventions in this case were serious and would have continued had the Fire Authority not acted immediately by serving a prohibition notice on the Responsible Person.” 

Station Manager, Richard Hanley of North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said; “The majority of business premises that we visit under our audit schedule are well-managed, however, we continue to find premises, which do not have adequate fire risk assessments or fire safety provisions. The conviction of Mr Hussain on this matter shows how seriously the Fire Authority and the Courts view those who put the safety of others at risk in the event of a fire”.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service would like to remind business owners that it is important that they are aware of the legislative requirements they need to comply with including having an up to date fire risk assessment.

Business safety information is available on our website here; https://www.northyorksfire.gov.uk/businesssafety

 

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