SINGAPORE - Six building owners have been fined for occupying their premises without valid fire certificates.
The individuals were charged in court between Jan 12 and April 27 with occupying their premises and contravening Section 20(2) of the Fire Safety Act for one to two months.
The building owners were fined between $1,400 and $2,000.
Under the Act, the premises must have valid fire certificates before they can be occupied, reiterated the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) in a statement on Wednesday (May 12).
The six premises are at 121 Neythal Road, 27 Foch Road, 40 Tuas West Road, 175 Bencoolen Street, 5 Tuas View Lane, and 3 Pioneer Sector Walk.
The places cited are mostly industrial buildings, except for 27 Foch Road and 175 Bencoolen Street which are commercial buildings.
SCDF said it had alerted the building owners two months before the expiry of the fire certificates and issued multiple reminders. But they had failed to renew the certificates.
All six have renewed their certificates since then, added SCDF.
A valid certificate is evidence that the fire safety measures installed on the premises have been checked, and the building is safe to be occupied, said SCDF.
Depending on the area's fire risk and extent of fire safety measures required, the certificate has to be renewed every one to three years.
SCDF said it takes a serious view of fire certificate-related offences. A valid certificate is issued only after a building's fire safety measures, such as fire alarms, sprinklers, and emergency power supply systems have been checked and found to be in working condition.
A professional engineer must be engaged to do the checks.
If these critical systems are not functioning, there is great risk to the building's occupants during emergencies, and it can lead to severe consequences such as loss of life and damage to property, SCDF said.
"We urge all building owners to play their part to ensure the safety of the occupants of their premises."