Barbed wire

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  • Barbed wire

    A property I've just bought has a small kitchen extension at the back with a flat roof. Around this roof barbed wire has been strung, presumably to deter burglars from accessing a top floor window via said roof.

    I'd be happy to leave this in place but not if it left me open to be sued should someone should injure themself on it.

    What does the law say?


  • #2
    Irrespective of the law, I would leave it there.

    We will be getting to a situation eventualy, where you can't
    have single pane glass windows, because if someone breaks
    it, burglars climb in, they will sue you because they got cut.

    I have just found this today.
    Managers of blocks of flats please note.

    Occupiers Liability Act 1984

    Occupiers' Liability Act 1984 says in effect that an occupier owes
    a duty towards a trespasser (in relation to any danger arising from
    the state of the land or property or from things done or not done there)
    he is or should be aware of the danger; and
    he knows or should know that people may in practice be exposed
    to the danger; and

    he can reasonably be expected in all the circumstances to offer
    them some protection from it.

    In these circumstances, the duty is to take such care as is reasonable
    in all the circumstances to see that the person is not injured as a result
    of that danger.
    This duty may in appropriate cases be discharged by giving suitable

    such as ? Burglars Beware, barbed wire, you may cut yourself if you
    trespass onto this area.

    You take the appropriate action you think fit.
    1) Leave it there with warning signs, which are lit at night !!!
    2) Remove the barbed wire.
    3) Do nothing

    Last edited by ram; 06-12-2012, 09:37 AM. Reason: 1, 2, 3. added


    • #3
      Ram has the right legislation. In effect you have a legal duty to any user of the building for whatever reason.

      You are therefore having to justify what you did in the event of a claim. Since 2003, despite the Daily Mail, if a burglar is convicted then they have to ask the court for permission to claim.

      As a rule you have to consider whether someone might come in contact with it so with no access to the roof, over 2.4 metres and signage will pass the test.

      If you plan to use the roof for recreation or a fire escape then its inappropriate. If that window is vulnerable you might consider a security shutter or bars or reinforcement.
      Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.


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