Wokingham restaurant owner charged for 12 fire safety breaches

The former owner of the Pad Thai restaurant in Wokingham has admitted breaching up to twelve fire safety rules and putting staff and customers in danger.

Patipat Kansikam, who formerly owned the Red Lion pub, was the registered owner of Pad Thai in Market Place when inspectors visited the premises in March last year. He has since sold the restaurant, but is nonetheless liable for the safety problems uncovered by fire safety inspectors.

The Royal Berkshire Fire Authority’s officers found the following issues at Pad Thai:

  • Smoke detectors were taped over with cling film so as not to activate
  • Inadequate fire protection measures
  • Obstructed escape routes
  • Inadequate fire alarm systems
  • Poor standards of staff fire safety training
  • Inadequate fire evacuation procedures

The fire service stated that these breaches of fire safety regulations put both staff who worked at the restaurant and customers who dined there at serious risk.

Kansikam, 35, pleaded guilty to the charges levelled against him and will return to court to be sentenced next month. However, he says that after the fire service raised the safety issues with him, he spent money on improvements. The cost of this is what apparently made him sell the restaurant in August 2010.