By Vanessa Cavasinni, editor Australian Hotelier
Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group (ALH) has been fined $42,500 by the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) for fire alarm breaches at Magnum’s Hotel.
The hotel, located on the main street of Airlie Beach, a resort town on Queensland’s Whitsunday Coast, was heavily penalised for illegally disarming its fire alarms. ALH plead guilty to 17 charges of ‘failing to maintain a prescribed fire safety installation to a standard of safety and reliability in the event of fire’.
QFES Commissioner Katarina Carroll said the significant fines should act as a deterrent to other businesses from neglecting fire saftety within their venues.
“This is a message to all building owners that QFES is dedicated to upholding the safety of Queenslanders and those who are knowingly and deliberately breaking the law will be found and prosecuted,” Carroll said.
“These alarm systems are installed for the safety of all people and the message is simple; disabling fire alarms and early warning systems is in breach of building fire safety legislation.
“It’s unfortunate that legal action was necessary in this situation, but the safety of patrons, staff and the community, should be the number one priority of any business owner.”
The disabling of the fire alarms was detected during an audit, when QFES officers analysed the hotel’s alarm system data.
“Fire detection and alarm systems are vital lifesaving equipment, especially in night clubs and hotels, where patrons may be effected by alcohol and large groups of people congregate in small spaces,” stated Mark Halverson, QFES manager of compliance and prosecution.
“Any delay in providing early fire warning can lead to injury or death of patrons. Magnum’s Hotel was found to have deliberately disabled fire alarms on multiple occasions.”
TheShout has reached out to ALH for comment.