March 12, 2021

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Bristol pub fined £132k for breaching fire safety rules

A microbrewery in Bristol has been convicted after breaching health and safety regulations which led to a fire in 2018.

Avon Fire and Rescue Service prosecuted the Brewhouse and Kitchen after it was found the pub did not have suitable and sufficient measures in place to reduce risk and spread of fire at its premises in Cotham Hill.

Nobody was hurt during the chimney fire but the firm was found to have a lack of effective planning, organisation, control, monitoring and review of fire safety preventative and protective measures. There was also a failure to ensure there was appropriate fire detection equipment.

The microbrewery was fined a total of £120,000 plus £12,000 in costs.

Head of Fire Safety, Station Manager Karl Venn said this case shows the fire service will not hesitate in prosecuting when necessary.

While commending the firm for accepting responsibility, Venn said: “All businesses are required to comply with fire safety legislation and while prosecution is considered a last resort, we first and foremost have a duty to keep our communities safe and ensure residents aren’t put at risk.

“Although Brewhouse and Kitchen had a previous good record of fire safety, the substantial fine handed out by the judge in this case should serve as a warning to any business as to how seriously breaches of fire safety law are taken.”

In a statement, Brewhouse and Kitchen said: “There has been a wholesale change of the company’s operations team, new systems and processes are now in place, and the company has taken significant learning from this matter. Brewhouse and Kitchen has an excellent record to date on all matters of fire safety, licensing, health and safety and food hygiene.

“The mistakes that were found in this case have already driven senior management focus and substantial, positive changes as to how the company manages fire safety. However, on this occasion the company recognises it could have done better and fully accepts its responsibility in this matter.”

This article was originally published on IFSEC Global.

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