Landlord’s £20,000 fine for Worthing fire sends ‘clear message’

A fire which trapped two people in their Worthing home could have resulted in ‘a number of fatalities’, the fire service has said.

Former landlord Terry Millis was fined £20,000 earlier this week after he admitted knowing the fire alarm was broken weeks before the fire.

Two people became trapped during the fire. Picture and video: Eddie Mitchell

Two people became trapped during the fire. Picture and video: Eddie Mitchell

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Millis, 62, of Highview in Sompting, appeared at Brighton Crown Court on Wednesday.

Fire investigation officer Richard Bradley, said: “This fire could have resulted in a number of fatalities.

“Due to the serious nature of this incident, West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service took legal action against the landlord.

“Landlords have a moral and legal responsibility to ensure that fire safety systems, such as fire alarms, are in good working order.

“This fine sends out a clear message that poor fire safety management will not be tolerated, and that enforcement action will be taken by the fire service.”

West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service works closely with the local businesses to assist them in complying with fire safety regulations.

Fire safety advice for businesses and information on legislation is available on their business fire safety page.