A Fire Risk Assessor has been fined a total of £1,600 after being charged with four counts of breaching fire safety regulations.

Mr Martin Ballard, a former employee of Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service, failed to identify serious fire safety issues with his fire risk assessment at St Clements Court, Leicester. Mr Ballard retired from Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service before becoming a self-employed Fire Risk Assessor.

He appeared at Leicester Crown Court on Monday 19 October and Tuesday 20 October 2020. He was fined £1600, and ordered to pay costs of £7,864.15.

Andy Clarke, Station Manager Fire Protection, said: “These failings had the potential to put the lives of residents in this premises at risk of death or serious injury.

“Fire risk assessments play a pivotal part in determining the fire safety measures and fire safety strategy for any building, and is a task that only people with suitable training and experience should undertake.”

Although Mr Ballard had served within the fire and rescue service for more than 30 years, he had no formal training in providing fire risk assessments and had very limited experience.

Andy Clarke added: “This sentence should act as a warning to all Fire Risk Assessors, that Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service will take these matters extremely seriously.

“We will not hesitate to take action where inadequate fire risk assessments put people at risk.

“Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service are prepared to work with those responsible for fire safety, to help them achieve compliance with fire safety standards.”

If you require any help or guidance around fire safety, please contact Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service on 0116 210 5555. Alternatively, visit leics-fire.gov.uk for fire safety advice.



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About the Service

 Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service provides emergency response, prevention and protection services from 20 stations across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Its headquarters is based in Birstall, Leicester.

During 2018/19, the Service attended 762 road traffic collisions, of which 125 were extrications from vehicles, in addition to ­2,569 fires. We carried out 6,746 home safety checks and fitted 4,790 smoke alarms. 279 schools were visited as part of the Service’s schools programme, delivering fire and road safety education to pupils. Staff organised or took part in 1,068 community safety events, promoting fire and road safety and arson prevention, and 134 Virtual Fatal Four (VF4) events as part of the Service’s young drivers’ road safety project. 

The Service’s prevention, education, enforcement and inspection programmes have resulted in significant reductions in the number of incidents. In the last ten years, fire-related incidents have reduced by over 30 percent. 


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