The Co-operative Group fined £210,000 for fire safety breaches

The Co-operative Group was fined £210,000 and ordered to pay costs of more than £28,000 after pleading guilty to six breaches of the Fire Safety Order.

After carrying out fi re safety inspections at one of the Co-op’s Southampton stores Hampshire Fire & Rescue Authority found that the organisation had failed to keep the rear emergency doors unlocked and had fitted a lock requiring a security code on the emergency door between the retail and storage areas, which prevented the door being opened easily in an emergency.

It was also noted that the Group failed to ensure that the store manager was given suitable and sufficient fire safety training and they had failed to ensure that the fire alarm system was tested on a regular basis.

Southampton Crown Court also heard that breaches occurred at two other Southampton premises and a store in Portsmouth.