Risking the lives of occupants at a Southampton residential block has seen company director Charles Morgan fined and on the receiving end of a suspended prison sentence, after he pleaded guilty to providing a fire risk assessment that was not suitable or sufficient.
Speaking after the case Deputy Chief Fire Officer Steve Apter said:
“Fire risk assessments underpin the whole process of building fire safety. Mr Morgan failed to inspect and identify fire safety deficiencies within the building and failed to note a compromised alarm and evacuation strategy for the residents. This shortfall meant that those responsible for implementing fire safety measures were unable to fulfil their legal obligations and placed occupants at risk of death or serious injury had a fire occurred.
“Mr Morgan elected to go to trial in the crown court and his legal team, Warren Spencer of Blackhurst Budd, submitted an abuse of process defence resulting in significant extra work for the prosecution team, extra legal argument hearings and resulting in additional costs to the public purse.
“We were confident that the case passed the evidential threshold and following the Judge’s comments that the abuse of process argument was “without merit”, it was pleasing that the Fire Authority’s cost application was met in full.”
Director of BBFS.