Two fire-fighters are reported to be suing after they were injured by falling brickwork whilst attending a fire.
The two men – Brian Dempsie and Ross French – were part of a team called to a blaze in Bowell during February 2008. The fire was in the garage of a domestic property but the garage was detached from the house.
The incident happened as the fire-fighters were trying to open the door of the garage to fight the fire. However, whilst this was happening, brickwork from above the lintel fell on top of Mr Dempsie and Mr French.
Mr French suffered a serious leg injury in the accident, whilst his colleague Mr Dempsie – who was just a trainee fire-fighter at the time – suffered a dislocated shoulder and a fracture of the kneecap.
Now, the Herald Scotland reports that the two men are seeking compensation from the Fire Board for their injuries. Their legal team are reported to be arguing that opening the garage door was an unnecessary risk and was not needed to fight the fire.
It is claimed that when the fire-fighters arrived, flames were coming through the roof of the garage as most of it had collapsed. The men’s legal team assert that there was no threat to life or other property from the blaze.
The compensation claim is being defended by the Fire Board. They counter argue that the decision to open the door was taken by the watch commander with the purpose of providing a safe way to fight the fire without having to enter the garage.
The case is ongoing.