Sprin­kler cam­paign MSP hopes to re­ceive back­ing

The Press and Journal (North-East) - - NEWS -

A High­land MSP will find out by next week if the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment will back his call for sprin­klers to be in­stalled in all new­build so­cial hous­ing.

On the an­niver­sary of the Gren­fell Tower fire tragedy yes­ter­day, Labour’s David Ste­wart pressed First Min­is­ter Ni­cola Stur­geon on the pro­posal.

The High­lands and is­lands MSP, who is tabling plans for a mem­ber’s bill at Holy­rood that would re­quire sprin­klers in all new so­cial hous­ing, asked the SNP leader if she would back the move.

Ms Stur­geon said “our hearts break” for the fam­i­lies of Gren­fell vic­tims, and that the im­por­tance of the is­sue had been “brought home to her” by yes­ter­day’s blaze in a tower block in the Gor­bals area of Glas­gow.

She added: “As David Ste­wart is aware, the two re­view pan­els that were set up in the wake of Gren­fell to ad­vise the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment re­ported their rec­om­men­da­tions yes­ter­day. The min­is­te­rial work­ing group has ac­cepted the pan­els’ rec­om­men­da­tions, which are wide rang­ing.

“I can­not go into them all right now, but one of the pro­pos­als is to ex­pand the use of sprin­kler sys­tems to im­prove fire safety.”

A con­sul­ta­tion on Mr Ste­wart’s pro­posal found 94% were in favour of the plans, and the first min­is­ter said her gov­ern­ment would re­veal its re­sponse next week.

She said: “I am aware of David Ste­wart’s mem­ber’s bill pro­posal and I thank him for bring­ing it for­ward.

“The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment is con­sid­er­ing his final pro­posal and, as I be­lieve he knows, we will in­form par­lia­ment of our de­ci­sion in that re­gard by the 21 June dead­line that has been set.”

Fires broke out at two high-rise blocks on the an­niver­sary of the Gren­fell Tower dis­as­ter.

Eight peo­ple were res­cued from a build­ing in Glas­gow.

Though not com­pa­ra­ble to the tragedy, the in­ci­dents high­light the on­go­ing fire safety con­cerns of those dwelling in high-rise blocks.

More than 10 fire crews, po­lice and other emer­gency ser­vices were sent to Com­mer­cial Court in the Gor­bals area of Glas­gow, where smoke could be seen com­ing from the 14th floor yes­ter­day morn­ing.

The Scot­tish Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice said the flames from a fire be­lieved to have started in a kitchen were ex­tin­guished and eight peo­ple were taken to hos­pi­tal.

Around 150 peo­ple were evac­u­ated from Roma Corte in Lewisham in Lon­don, as around 58 fire­fight­ers ar­rived at the scene, along with po­lice and am­bu­lance staff, af­ter they were called to the in­ci­dent at around 4.15am.

Lon­don Fire Bri­gade (LFB) said a sprin­kler sys­tem sup­pressed the fire, which was con­tained and then ex­tin­guished in a flat on the 13th floor. The cause of the fire is un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

A spokesman for Bar­ratt Res­i­den­tial As­set Man­age­ment, the firm that man­ages the build­ing, said it was con­duct­ing an in­ves­ti­ga­tion, but that “full fire safety pro­ce­dures in the build­ing were fol­lowed suc­cess­fully”.

Fire­fight­ers out­side Com­mer­cial Court in Glas­gow

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