Petrol station in Cornwall fined £100k after people found sleeping inside it
The company running a petrol station in Cornwall has been fined more than £100,000 after people were found sleep inside of it.
In 2022, inspection carried out by Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service found people had been sleeping illegally inside the garage in Lanner - without suitable fire precautions.
The company operating Lanner Garage ST Forecourt LTS, which is near Redruth, pleaded guilty to five offences under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
It was fined £100,000 - reduced from £150,000 to account for an early guilty plea.
The director of the company, Mr Satheeswaran Sachchithananthamoorthy, from Bristol, was also fined.
He was ordered to pay £3,800, reduced from £5,700 for his early guilty plea, and £4,038 in costs and a victim surcharge of £190 when he appeared before Exeter Magistrates’ Court on 8 February.
The offences related to failures in the fire safety standards identified by officers of Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) following a fire safety inspection at the property in October 2022.
These included not having suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment, the fire detection and warning system fell short of the standard expected in a premises providing sleeping accommodation and the escape routes serving the sleeping accommodation were not adequately protected.
The fire exit serving the sleeping accommodation was also obstructed and the emergency lighting fell short of the standard expected in premises providing sleeping accommodation.
The subsequent investigation by CFRS revealed that the company had failed to review the fire safety provisions at the premises and it was served a restriction notice.
CFRS is reminding business owners in Cornwall that they are required to comply with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
Businesses must have a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment and ensure that all fire safety provisions are adequate and regularly maintained.
Councillor Martyn Alvey, the portfolio holder responsible for CFRS at Cornwall Council, said: “I’d like to thank the team who have worked hard to bring this prosecution.
"When people put others’ lives at risk, we will not hesitate to take action and prosecute where necessary.”
Antony Bartlett, assistant chief fire officer at CFRS, said: “I urge all businesses to ensure they comply with fire regulations. These measures are in place to protect people and can ultimately save lives.”