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Building collapses after late night blaze

A three-storey tenement building in Glasgow’s southside has collapsed after a fire spread from a ground floor shop.

Several fire crews have been working through the night to tackle the blaze, which is now under control.

The fire has burned through the building on Albert Cross in Pollokshields from the ground floor to the roof.

Residents were evacuated from the building and one person has been treated for the effects of smoke.

Roads in the surrounding area were closed following the blaze which is thought to have started in the minimarket, Strawberry Garden, late on Sunday evening.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who represents the area in the Scottish Parliament, described it as “dreadful news” for affected residents and businesses and urged constituents who need help to email or call her office.

Albert Drive, Kenmure Street and several nearby roads have been cordoned off to traffic and are expected to remain closed for several hours.

Changes to Scottish high-rise building and fire standards confirmed

Changes to building and fire safety standards applicable to new high-rise buildings in Scotland will come into force on 1 October 2019, the Scottish government has confirmed.

The government has amended the 2004 Building (Scotland) Regulations to give effect to the changes. Updated Building Standards Technical Handbooks for both domestic and non-domestic buildings, which explain how to achieve the standards set out in the Building Regulations, also come into force on 1 October.

The changes include new fire resistance requirements for cladding materials used on external walls over 11 metres in height; and new requirements for second escape staircases, evacuation alert systems, storey identification signs and dwelling indicator signs in buildings over 18 metres in height.

The changes follow the recommendations of two independent reviews of the Scottish building standards system commissioned by the Scottish government in September 2017.

Metcalfe Katherine

Katherine Metcalfe

Legal Director

In Scotland, the process of building warrants largely works. Here, the focus will be on making sure that buildings are constructed in accordance with approved plans.

Could fireworks be restricted at Scottish homes?

Fireworks Edinburgh Castle
Image captionCurfews, no-fireworks zones and home restrictions could be introduced in Scotland

A group led by a former fire chief is looking at potential restrictions of fireworks in Scotland.

The review group, commissioned by the Scottish government, will consider introducing controls to fireworks on private properties.

Curfews and no-fireworks zones will also be looked at as part of a plan to address widespread concerns.

Former fire chief Alasdair Hay, a firefighter for more than 30 years, has been appointed chairman of the group.

‘Reduce the damage’

Community safety minister and MSP for Edinburgh Eastern, Ash Denham, launched the fireworks action a week before Bonfire Night.

Although legislation on the sale of fireworks is reserved to Westminster, Ms Denham said “a full and frank debate on how fireworks are sold” was needed.

Included in the plan is a proposal to set out guidance for community groups on safe public displays.

Earlier this month figures showed strong public support for tighter regulationsafter campaigners called for action to end the “misery” caused by fireworks.

More than 16,000 people responded to a Scottish government consultation. It found that:

  • 94% want tighter controls on the sale of fireworks
  • 92% feel there should be tighter controls on fireworks use
  • 93% want stronger regulations to ensure animals are not caused unnecessary suffering as a result of fireworks misuse
  • 87% would support an outright ban on the sale of fireworks
  • 70% reported being affected by fireworks used in an irresponsible or unsafe way.
Bonfire Pic: Angie Brown
Image captionThe action plan was launched a week before Bonfire Night

A separate YouGov survey, also commissioned by the Scottish government, found 71% of respondents supported tighter controls on the sale of fireworks and more than half (58%) backed a ban.

Ms Denham said: “Our fireworks review group will now consider how best to use the powers at our disposal to drive forward action to reduce the damage caused by fireworks misuse.

“We want to ensure that every community is able to enjoy fireworks without fear of their inappropriate use and I look forward to working closely with communities, key partners and the fireworks industry to achieve this.”

Fire Warden Training – Book Now

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires employers to have a strategy to evacuate all occupants within a building. The legislation implements a risk-based approach to fire safety in community, industrial and business premises and requires the responsible person (usually the employer, owner or occupier) to carry out a fire safety risk assessment and implement appropriate fire precautionary and protection measures, and to maintain a fire management plan.

As such, businesses are recognising the importance of having fully-trained fire wardens as part of their emergency evacuation strategy, and DPD Fire & Safety can provide bespoke courses for your business.

Fire Risk Assessments – Why are they so important?

Have you completed a competent fire risk assessment?

A fire risk assessment is important to assist in the creation of a quality fire safety policy in a business premises. It is mandatory by law and ensures all eventualities for the use of the building have been looked at to protect the building, staff, visitors and its contents from fire.

Every business is required to appoint a Responsible Person who holds the responsibility for ensuring your fire risk assessment and fire safety policy satisfies the requirements of fire legislation/law. When completing these responsibilities it is necessary for you to use someone who is competent and therefore fully capable of supplying you with a comprehensive fire risk assessment – you can do it yourself, but will need to feel that you understand all the requirements of your premises.

If it is found that your risk assessment/fire safety policy is not adequate you may face prosecution, in the event of a fire, as the person appointed to fulfil these duties.

For further information on fire risk assessments in the workplace visit the GOV.UK website

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