Candle sets hairdresser on fire

Stylist Gail Purcell was badly burnt in an incident at a London hairdresser’s salon when her clothes were set on fire by candles placed around the premises to create a relaxing atmosphere.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard that the fire risk assessment carried out by Rudan Limited, the owner’s company, was defective. Staff had received no training in dealing with emergencies and the fire doors were wedged open as a standard practice.

Although the company admitted two offences under fire safety legislation, the court decided that the matter was so serious that the maximum fine of £5,000 per offence available under their powers was insufficient and that the case should be referred to Southwark Crown Court for sentencing at a later date. The salon is run by Daniel Hersheson, who has a celebrity client list that has included the Duchess of Cambridge among others.

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