Gloucester landlord prosecuted over fire alarm failure

A landlord based in Gloucester has been fined for failing to ensure that the property he was renting out to multiple tenants was safe in terms of fire risks.

Abdulla Juma Miraj, of Vauxhall Road in Gloucester, was found guilty of failing to repair a fire escape or make sure that fire alarms were working at his rental property on Barton Road. He was also found to have failed to display safety notices in the property as well as operating an unlicensed house in multiple occupation (HMO).

Mr Juma Miraj pleaded not guilty at Cheltenham Magistrates Court on 14 November but was prosecuted and ordered to pay £400 for operating without a licence and for his failure to comply with management regulations. The landlord was also forced to pay £1,000 costs as well as an £80 victim surcharge.

It's essential to make sure you have the right type of landlord insurance to cover you and your property for any eventuality, especially when it comes to health-related issues such as fire safety, as in this instance.

The prosecution of this landlord is the seventh over the last five years and is the result of numerous HMO inspections carried out by the local council and by Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service, in a bid to crack down on rogue landlords.

Julie Wight, private sector housing manager at Gloucester City Council, told Gloucestershire Live: "Landlords must realise that they must comply with mandatory licensing and management regulations when operating a HMO.

"This council will not fail in their duty to take action against landlords who break the law. They place their tenants at risk of harm from poorly maintained and managed property. Our private sector housing team is always happy to work with landlords and offer guidance regarding the legislation," added Ms Wight.