Man killed in se­cond fa­tal is­land house fire

Blaze: Deaths within week come as shock to com­mu­nity

The Press and Journal (Highlands & Islands) - - News Highlands & Islands - BY DAVID KERR

A man has died in a house fire on South Uist – the se­cond fa­tal blaze to hit the is­land in less than a week.

The man, who was in his 80s, was found dead in a house in the Kil­do­nan area of the is­land after a fire on Wed­nes­day evening.

The death comes just days after Morag Ann Macdon­ald, also in her 80s, died in a fire at her house in the vil­lage of Gar­ry­na­monie on South Uist.

A lo­cal coun­cil­lor said the deaths had rocked the is­land com­mu­nity – say­ing “doom and gloom” had set­tled on South Uist.

The lat­est blaze broke out at about 5.40pm on Wed­nes­day in the Kil­do­nan area of the is­land.

Fire­fight­ers from Loch bois dale and Ben be cul a brought the blaze un­der con­trol quickly but could not save the man, who was the only oc­cu­pant of the house at the time.

It is un­der­stood that he is a rel­a­tive of a cou­ple who re­cently bought the house after mov­ing to the is­land.

The fire is cur­rently be­ing treated as “un­ex­plained” and an in­ves­ti­ga­tion is on­go­ing to es­tab­lish the cause.

Coun­cil­lor Don­nie Steele said: “It’s an ab­so­lute shock, es­pe­cially after it hap­pened just six­days after the last house fire.

“It’s a real blow to the com­mu­nity and I’m sure we will all do what­ever we can to sup­port the fam­ily.”

Fel­low Uist coun­cil­lor David Blaney added: “It’s doom and gloom on Uist. It has hit the com­mu­nity very hard.

“One would be bad enough but two is dread­ful.”

A Scot­tish Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice spokesman said: “Fire­fight­ers were alerted to a dwelling fire in Kil­do­nan, South Uist, at 5.40pm on Wed­nes­day, Fe­bru­ary 15.

“Two fire ap­pli­ances from Ben­bec­ula and one from Lochbois­dale were mo­bilised and the fire was ex­tin­guished.

“Sadly a man, who was the only per­son within the prop­erty, died.

“The last crew left the scene at 9.10pm after en­sur­ing the area was made safe.

“An in­ves­ti­ga­tion will be car­ried out in due course to es­tab­lish the source of the fire.”

Po­lice con­firmed that the vic­tim’s next of kin has been in­formed.

A spokes­woman added: “The cause of the fire is un­ex­plained at this time and po­lice in­quiries re­main on­go­ing.”

The in­ci­dent fol­lows closely after the death of Uist woman Morag Ann Macdon­ald who lived alone at Gar­ry­na­monie. Her fu­neral was held yes­ter­day.

“One would be bad enough but two is dread­ful”

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