Three years to the day after two small children died in a rental property where the agent had not fitted smoke alarms, the fire service yesterday issued a video urging agents and landlords to observe their legal responsibilities.
On February 20, 2016, three-year-old Logan Taylor and his brother Jake Casey, aged two, died in a fire in the family home in Huddersfield.
The letting agent, Kamal Bains, was jailed last July for 12 months for failing to fit smoke alarms in the house.
He had faced two manslaughter charges but midway through a two-week trial pleaded guilty to an alternative charge at Leeds Crown Court.
The court heard how the boys’ mother tried desperately to save them after the fire started in their bedroom, but was overcome by smoke.
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service has now produced a video aimed at letting agents and landlords.
Deputy chief fire officer Dave Walton said: “This was a desperately tragic case for everyone affected by it and without doubt the boys’ memory will stay with the attending and investigating fire-fighters for the rest of their lives also.
“On the third year anniversary of the boys’ loss we want to remind landlords and letting agencies of their responsibilities to install smoke alarms on every storey of their rented properties and carbon monoxide alarms in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance.
“Do not take the risk with people’s lives and do not think that a fire ‘will never happen’ – it could.
“If you are a private sector landlord or letting agent, then take your responsibilities seriously and take heed of this warning.”
It is not, perhaps, the most exciting or slick of videos – but it is certainly one that should be watched.