A businessman and former Lord Mayor of Nottingham has been sentenced to 26 weeks imprisonment suspended for two years following breaches of fire safety law at his factory, which manufactured quilts.
Mohammed Munir pleaded guilty at Nottingham Crown Court on Wednesday (4 January) to six offences under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, including failing to carry out a suitable and sufficient risk assessment and failing to comply with an enforcement order. He was also ordered to do 180 hours unpaid work and pay £4,000 in costs.
Following concerns by fire crews, fire protection officers from Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) visited the premises, identified a number of areas which required rectifying and issued an enforcement notice.
NFRS said officers visited the premises on subsequent occasions to assess progress and advise Mr Munir on achieving a satisfactory standard of fire safety, to protect his employees in the event of a fire. They agreed to allow Mr Munir additional time to comply with the enforcement notice.
Mr Munir was prosecuted when it became apparent that he had ignored the deadline and continued to trade without ensuring his premises were safe.
Neil Williamson, fire protection station manager at NFRS said:
“In this case, my officers had previously spent some time ensuring that the occupier was aware of his responsibilities and duties to ensure the safety of employees, and it is disappointing that he chose to place people at risk from fire. The absence of a fire risk assessment is a particularly bad aspect of this case, especially after numerous reminders.”
Other offences were: Failing to ensure an effective means of escape from the premises; failing to ensure that exit routes were clear at all times; failing to provide adequate emergency lighting in emergency routes and exits; and failing to ensure that non-automatic firefighting equipment provided was easily accessible, simple to use and indicated by signs.