Poundland fined £20,000 for Portsmouth store safety breaches

A national budget retailer has been fined £20,000 for fire safety breaches in one of its stores.

Poundland Ltd found themselves facing the fine after its store on Commercial Road, Portsmouth was judged unsafe by fire safety investigators.

The fire safety in the retail outlet was so poor that the inspectors, from Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, evacuated the store and closed it until the breaches were fixed.

Bob Ratcliffe, head of community safety at the fire and rescue service, explained that his job is to aid businesses get their fire safety up to scratch.

“We work closely with businesses to help them with their duty to comply under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order, but where their responsibilities are not taken seriously, the Service will always consider prosecution,” he said.

All commercial properties face a fine if requisite fire safety measures have not been taken. Fire risk assessments improve safety and decrease the chance of Responsible Persons receiving a fine.

This is not the first time that Poundland Ltd has been fined for having poor fire safety: in 2005 the retail company was ordered to pay £3000 for blocking fire exits.