A public health alert was triggered after inspectors found a body piercing clinic operating without electricity, meaning its equipment couldn’t be sterilised, a court heard.
Customers who had work done at the Blackpool Body Piercing Clinic while it was without power were contacted by Public Health England and urged to have a blood test after concerns were raised in October 2013.
The clinic’s 48-year-old owner, James Woods, of Park Road, Blackpool, admitted five health and safety offences when he appeared at Preston Crown Court.
Eight safety offences
They included offences related to the clinic’s electricity supply, failing to provide suitable washing facilities, failing to ensure the workplace was organised to allow people to circulate and failing to make sure waste was in suitable receptacles.
Mr Woods is now due to be sentenced on November 7.
The clinic’s owner had initially denied eight offences and asked to be tried at crown court.
But he subsequently changed his plea and admitted five of the offences. The prosecution agreed that three other offences, which Mr Woods denied, would be allowed to lie on file.
Significant public health alert
Following the court case, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for public safety and enforcement, Councillor Gillian Campbell, said that while the Springfield Road clinic was without electricity a recommended sterilising device could not be used, putting customers’ safety at risk.
She said it had been irresponsible to carry on doing body piercing work while there was no electricity, adding that the situation had resulted in a significant public health alert.
Councillor Campbell said Public Health England had contacted people who’d had piercings during the period in question and urged them to have a blood test.
But Mr Woods said the charges he admitted related to lesser offences and insisted that his customers’ health had not been put at risk.
Accident Advice Helpline can help
Accident Advice Helpline offers piercing infection advice for people who’ve had a piercing or tattoo and believe it has gone wrong.
It says around one in 10 people now have a piercing or tattoo and is urging anyone needing advice to call its experts on 0800 689 0500.
Date Published: October 16, 2014
Author: David Brown