The Scottish Government has welcomed publication today of an inquiry by HM Chief Inspector of Fire and Rescue Authorities into the unsuccessful attempt to rescue Alison Hume from a disused mineshaft in 2008.

The Inquiry, by Steven Torrie, was ordered by Scottish Ministers under Section 44 of the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005, and followed a Fatal Accident Inquiry into Mrs Hume's death.

Ministers ordered the Inquiry to ensure lessons are learned from the tragic death of Mrs Hume and that issues raised in the Fatal Accident Inquiry are addressed.

Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs Roseanna Cunningham said: "This is an important piece of work done by the Chief Inspector and I thank him for the time he has taken to prepare it. It is a reminder that the death of Alison Hume was a tragedy the likes of which we never want to see repeated, and our thoughts are with Mrs Hume's family and friends.

"The basis of this work was to establish what lessons can be learned and what further action is necessary to ensure as far as possible that this cannot happen again.

"The Chief Inspector's report makes several key recommendations. It is right that we take time to consider these in detail before we agree with individual fire and rescue services what action needs to be taken - both immediately by fire and rescue services and in the longer-term by the new single service.

"We are already embarking on a process of reform of Scotland's fire and rescue services to not just protect but crucially to improve local services. A single fire and rescue service will be able to provide more equitable access to specialist resources and improve consistency in training and application of guidance across the whole of Scotland.

"Our fire and rescue services continue to do an excellent job in often difficult circumstances. However, it is vital lessons are learned from this process to ensure future capability in the face of challenging situations is strengthened, and public safety improved."


Photo: Roseanna Cunningham, Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs

Courtesy of the Scottish Government


Posted March 29th, 2012 at 1355 by Andrew. Comment by emailing: