12 October 2015
A landlord in Chelsea, West London, has been handed fines totalling almost £50,000 after a fire at one of his properties forced a tenant to leap from a window to escape.
After the blaze, fire inspectors from the local council and London Fire Brigade found a number of dangerous safety failings in the maisonette, which housed 5 people.
These included the building having no smoke alarms, escape routes were not protected and there were no fire resistant doors fitted in the bedrooms.
Landlord Mr Zhe Zhang, and his property company Chelsea Residential Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching fire safety laws, receiving fines £48,205 in fines to be paid within 28 days.
Cllr Rock Feilding-Mellen, Kensington and Chelsea Council’s head of housing, said: “It is only by a stroke of sheer luck that there wasn’t at least one death or serious injury on that fateful night in January this year.
“In this instance the landlord neglected to ensure that the property met the necessary safety standards. I’m also shocked that in the height of winter he only permitted the central heating to be on for a mere two hours a day and it’s no wonder that tenants had to resort to using their own heaters.”
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