06 March 2019
Stapley Care Home in Liverpool has been ordered to pay a fine for a range of fire safety offences that put staff and residents at risk of serious injury or death.
Liverpool Magistrates Court found the home guilty of five breaches of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, after an inspection from April 26 2018.
Brian Massie, senior fire protection officer for Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service (MFRS), said, “This is a care home with approximately 70 residents, some suffering dementia and needing significant support.
“From 2011 onwards, several inspections of the premises have been conducted and it is clear Stapely Care Home were aware of their duties under the fire safety order.”
The 2018 inspection found the care home had failed to maintain satisfactory fire separation in the cupboard ceilings, corridor walls, ground floor store room and basement or provide appropriate fire detectors and alarms.
Combustible materials had not been removed and the fire door was noted as inadequate, missing the appropriate safety strips and seals.
It was suggested that a fire could have spread very quickly due to insufficient means of raising an alarm, of preventing the spread of smoke and fire and of evacuating residents in need of significant help.
Those in charge were also accused of failing to ensure the premises were subject to a suitable system of maintenance.
Despite District Judge Shaw acknowledging the severity of the offences and ‘risk of harm including death’, as the care home is run by charitable organisations and, due to concerns about a very large fine having a detrimental impact on service users, the fine was set at £6,000.
Following on from this case, MFRS will be conducting a fire safety campaign targeting all care homes across Merseyside.