Faisal Hussain – a Blackburn landlord – has been served with a fine amounting to over £10,000 after tenants struggled to escape a fire in one of his properties, which was caused by an arson attack.
Following the fire at the three-storey property in Preston, however, it was later discovered by inspectors that the fire alarm system in place was not working, and the layout of escape routes had been changed and were inadequate.
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and Preston City Council found a catalogue of health and safety failings, which the landlord was responsible for.
Preston Crown Court heard that two windows in the property were also damaged by heat from the blaze, but because they were not sufficiently secured they fell to the ground below, almost causing serious injury to the occupant of another flat.
One of the tenants inside Mr Hussain’s property had to run past the fire in order to escape, risking serious injuries in the process.
The landlord pleaded guilty to 10 breaches of fire safety regulations and, as a result, was fined £10,000 (£1,000 for every separate offence) and was ordered to cover costs of £11,600.
Mr Hussain was also given a six-month prison sentence, which was suspended for two years, in addition to a 240-hour community service order.
Tony Crook, prevention group manager at Lancashire fire service, said: “We hope that this prosecution will ensure that the standard of the property is now kept within the requirements of the law.”