Littlehampton Chinese takeaway owner prosecuted for string of 'incredibly troubling' safety breaches

A takeaway owner from Littlehampton has been prosecuted for a string of fire safety breaches at his restaurant.

According to the West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, Lian Jian Shong, who runs Golden House chinese takeaway in Surrey Street, Littlehampton, appeared at Worthing Magistrates Court on Friday, October 11.

Golden House in Surrey Street, Littlehampton

Golden House in Surrey Street, Littlehampton

The court heard that during a business fire safety inspection, officers found there was no fire separation between the commercial kitchen downstairs and the residential accommodation above on the first floor, the fire service said.

In addition there was no fire alarm system, inadequate means of escape from first floor, dangerous electrics, inadequate general fire precautions, and no fire risk assessment in place, the spokesman added.

Area manager for protection at the fire service, Adrian Murphy, said: “The list of failings identified at this takeaway is incredibly troubling, and demonstrate the owner’s disregard not only for the safety of their employees, but also those living above the premises.

“Had a fire broken out, those in the premises would have had no prior warning from a smoke alarm, and their chances of making it out would have been greatly hindered by the lack of a proper escape route.

“As a licensed premises, the defendant should – by law – have had a written fire risk assessment with significant findings recorded, but this was not the case.

“As the fire authority, we take our responsibility for public protection incredibly seriously, and will not hesitate to prosecute when we find serious breaches of fire safety regulations, as evidenced here.”

He pleaded guilty to three counts of breaching the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

According to the fire service, Mr Shong, who gave his address as the restaurant, was sentenced to a fine of £414 - £138 per offence - and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £917 along with a £30 victim surcharge.

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 states that the management of the premises and the way people use it will have an effect on the evaluation of risk. It is essential that the means of escape and other fire precautions are adequate to ensure that everyone can make their escape to a place of total safety before the fire and its effects can trap them in the building.