Birmingham bar shut down for serious fire safety breaches

A basement bar in Birmingham has been shut down after the city council and local fire brigade uncovered serious fire safety breaches at the premises.

The Basement Bar and Restaurant, on Livery Street, was inspected by fire officers in September 2010. During the visit, a number of serious safety issues were uncovered. These included:

  • Faulty fire alarms
  • Flammable curtains and soft furnishings
  • Broken emergency exit lights
  • Blocked fire exits
  • Inadequate fire extinguishers

All of these measures are covered as part of even the most basic fire safety awareness training courses, which the owners of the business had obviously not attended.

Co-owner Baron Williams was given advice from the fire service and ordered to make improvements to the premises, but was issued with a Prohibition Notice in December 2010 after failing to comply.

Nigel Dawkins, the chair of the council’s licensing committee, said:

“In all my years I have been doing this I have never seen such a serious case, the consequences of which could have been quite shocking.
There has been a complete lack of control, a total disregard for public safety and a total disregard for fire regulations.”

Another very serious issue with the Basement Bar is that it was licensed as a restaurant for 60 people, but reports suggest it was sub-let as a nightclub for 250.