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Hertfordshire care home fined £175,000 over fire deaths

Newgrange

A £175,000 fine has been handed to the operators of Newgrange Care Home in Cheshunt following a fire that claimed the lives of two pensioners.

Newgrange of Cheshunt Ltd admitted five charges of failing to comply with fire safety legislation during a hearing at St Albans Crown Court, the BBC reported.

Ivy Spriggs and Daphne Holloway died in the fire that was caused by an electrical fault on April 8, 2017 (see Two killed in care home blaze). Fire crews rescued 33 residents, including three who were treated for burns and smoke inhalation.

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Chief fire officer Darryl Keen said: “This incident highlights the need for all business owners to ensure they fully comply with fire safety legislation.

“If enough competent staff had been present and properly trained to carry out long-established and recognised guidance on evacuations in a care home I am sure that a full evacuation would have been started long before our arrival.

“Evacuation of a care home is a difficult task and needs to be properly considered and practised so that everyone can escape unharmed.”

Newgrange provides residential care for up 38 elderly people. Its operator declined to comment when contacted by CHP.

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The author Lee Peart

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