Blackburn landlord fined for gas safety breach

Blackburn Magistrates' Court

Blackburn Magistrates' Court

First published in News Blackburn Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Hyndburn reporter

A LANDLORD could have put her tenant’s life at risk by letting her live in a home without a gas safety certification, a court heard.

Samera Hussain was fined by magistrates after she failed to provide proof of a gas safety record for her property in Cumberland Street, Audley, Blackburn.

Hussain, of nearby Shakeshaft Street, admitted failing to arrange an annual gas safety check and failing to comply with an improvement notice. She was fined £260 and ordered to pay costs of £207.

Hussain allowed her tenant to live in the house for almost two years without proof that four gas fires and a boiler were safe, Blackburn Magistrates’ Court heard.

By law, they should be checked annually, but an engineer only visited the property just before the tenant moved out last June.

And despite writing several letters and visiting her relative’s house, the council and Health and Safety Executive (HSE) could not track Hussain down.

Last April, the HSE served her an improvement notice ordering her to arrange a gas safety check within 26 days, but it was ignored, the court heard.

HSE Inspector Richard Clarke said: “Mrs Hussain potentially put her tenant’s life at risk by failing to arrange a gas safety check for nearly two years.

“We gave her several chances to organise an inspection, but she ignored all of these. As a result, we had no choice but to take legal action against her.

“Dozens of people are killed or badly harmed every year from carbon monoxide poisoning so it is vital that landlords take the risks seriously. We will continue to prosecute landlords who think the law doesn’t apply to them.”

Nobody from Blackburn with Darwen Council was available for comment.

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