Evening Times

Ball ready for Cup kick-off Fire death care home was rated ‘low risk’

Area category hadn’t been changed since Rosepark was built


FORMER Scotland goalie Alan Rough was the envy of millions when he got his hands on the new World Cup football.

But it’s New Zealand hopeful Steven Old who may yet get the chance to use it next summer.

Former Partick Thistle and Hibs star Rough, who played in three World Cups, tested out the ball which is being dubbed “the roundest ever” the day before it went on sale at Greaves Sports in Glasgow’s Gordon Street.

Alan, 58, said: “It’s very light. I think goalkeeper­s are going to find it hard. When I was playing they were light but they’re getting lighter.”

Alan, who played in World Cups in 1978, 1982 and 1986, tipped an emerging South American side to win. He said: “Brazil and England are always classed as favourites but I think somebody will win who has never won before.”

But Kilmarnock defender Old, 23, will be A CARE home where 14 pensioners died in a blaze was given the second lowest risk category by the fire service.

The Rosepark Care Home in Uddingston, Lanarkshir­e, was classed as a “category-C risk” based on assessment­s carried o u t by S t r at h c lyd e F i r e a n d Rescue (SFR) in the 1970s, which meant the property fell into the bracket of a residentia­l zone.

A fatal accident inquiry inquiry heard no attempt had been made to upgrade the care h o m e ’s r i s k c a t e g o r y, e ve n though Rosepark had been built after the street’s risk assessment and housed dozens of elderly residents with impaired mobility, sight problems and severe dementia.

The classifica­tion indicates the level of danger a blaze in a particular building is likely to pose for the surroundin­g area, with a serious fire in a Glasgow city centre property, for example, rated as a category A.

The rating also determines how quickly appliances should arrive on the scene and how many firefighti­ng teams would initially be called out.

The inquiry heard while it was recommende­d properties such as prisons, power stations and care homes should be considered “special risk”, this status was not noted for Rosepark in SFR’s incident log on the night of the blaze on January 31, 2004.

The inquiry was hearing evi- d e n c e f r o m Vi c t o r i a Ne i l l , a former SFR control room handler and was also told there was an eight-minute time lapse between the first fire appliance arriving on the scene and the ambulance service being informed.

A full incident log reporting all communicat­ions to and from the control room in relation to the Rosepark blaze showed the 999 call was received at 4.37am.

At 4 . 5 0 a m , t h e o f f i c e r i n charge of the first team of firefighte­rs on the scene – Bellshill Blue Watch – radioed in a “persons reported” message, code for people missing or trapped.

As a result, the ambulance s e r v i c e wa s a u t o m a t i c a l l y notified.

Asked why call handlers did not try to find out whether people were trapped inside when they received 999 calls, Mrs Ne i l l ex p l a i n e d t h ey we r e trained not to because too many people “cry wolf ”.

The log charted how quickly the situation escalated, with six appliances deployed from across Lanarkshir­e by 5.25am.

Paul Wade, for Strathclyd­e Fire and Rescue, asked if this represente­d a “high number of t h e a p p l i a n c e s ava i l a b l e i n Lanarkshir­e”?

“ Ve r y m u c h s o , ” s a i d Mr s Neill, adding she could recall no previous occasion in her 30-year c a r e e r wh e n t h e n u m b e r o f appliances deployed to an incident was tripled.

She also told the inquiry people were “quite often” confused into thinking their fire alarms automatica­lly alerted the fire service.

The inquiry, before Sheriff Principal Brian Lockhart in Motherwell, continues on Monday. hoping that team is New Zealand and that he is chosen to represent his native country.

The ball, made by Adidas, is called “Jabulani” which means “to celebrate” in isiZuli, one of the 11 languages of South Africa where next year’s tournament will be held.

 ??  ?? Steven, left, and Alan got a sneak preview of the ball to be used at next summer’s World Cup finals in South Africa
Steven, left, and Alan got a sneak preview of the ball to be used at next summer’s World Cup finals in South Africa
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