Care home owners guilty of flouting fire safety rules

The owners of a care home in Barnsley have been fined more than £10,000 for breaching fire safety rules, despite receiving a warning from the local fire service.

Park Care Ltd, the company which owns the Park Grange Nursing Home in the Barnsley village of Kendray, was prosecuted after a total of three fire safety breaches were uncovered.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (SYFR) visited the nursing home last year and found a number of problems. These included failure to fix defective fire doors, failure to carry out a proper fire risk assessment and failure to put suitable fire emergency measures in place, all of which are key points in any fire safety training course.

A warning was issued to Park Care Ltd over the breaches in August 2011, and this was followed by an official enforcement notice from the Fire Service. The appropriate improvements apparently were not made, because the company was taken to Sheffield Magistrates Court and pleaded guilty to breaching fire safety law. Park Care Ltd was ultimately fined £10,000.

Commenting on the outcome of the case, Terry Guthrie from the South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said:

“These breaches were so serious that had there been a fire at the home there was a real danger that residents would have been seriously injured or worse.
“Care homes are responsible for the safety of vulnerable residents and they need to adhere to fire safety regulations.
“Where we find these regulations aren’t followed we will take swift action.”