31.—(1) If the enforcing authority is of the opinion that use of premises involves or will involve a risk to relevant persons so serious that use of the premises ought to be prohibited or restricted, the authority may serve on the responsible person or any other person mentioned in article 5(3) a notice (in this Order referred to as “a prohibition notice”).
(2) The matters relevant to the assessment by the enforcing authority, for the purposes of paragraph (1), of the risk to relevant persons include anything affecting their escape from the premises in the event of fire.
(3) A prohibition notice must—
(a)state that the enforcing authority is of the opinion referred to in paragraph (1);
(b)specify the matters which in their opinion give or, as the case may be, will give rise to that risk; and
(c)direct that the use to which the prohibition notice relates is prohibited or restricted to such extent as may be specified in the notice until the specified matters have been remedied.
(4) A prohibition notice may include directions as to the measures which will have to be taken to remedy the matters specified in the notice and any such measures may be framed so as to afford the person on whom the notice is served a choice between different ways of remedying the matters.
(5) A prohibition or restriction contained in a prohibition notice pursuant to paragraph (3)(c) takes effect immediately it is served if the enforcing authority is of the opinion, and so states in the notice, that the risk of serious personal injury is or, as the case may be, will be imminent, and in any other case takes effect at the end of the period specified in the prohibition notice.
(6) Before serving a prohibition notice in relation to a house in multiple occupation, the enforcing authority shall, where practicable, notify the local housing authority of their intention and the use which they intend to prohibit or restrict.
(7) For the purposes of paragraph (6)—
“house in multiple occupation” means a house in multiple occupation as defined by sections 254 to 259 of the Housing Act 2004(1), as they have effect for the purposes of Part 1 of that Act (that is, without the exclusions contained in Schedule 14 to that Act); and
“local housing authority” has the same meaning as in section 261(2) of the Housing Act 2004.
(8) Without prejudice to the power of the court to cancel or modify a prohibition notice under article 35(2), no failure on the part of an enforcing authority to notify under paragraph (6) makes a prohibition notice void.
(9) Where a prohibition notice has been served under paragraph (1) the enforcing authority may withdraw it at any time.
(10) In this article, “premises” includes domestic premises other than premises consisting of or comprised in a house which is occupied as a single private dwelling and article 27 (powers of inspectors) shall be construed accordingly.