Call for review of fire safety in schools after blaze burnt down primary

The aftermath of the Cairneyhill Primary School fire

The Fife branch of Scotland’s largest teaching union has called on Fife Council to review its school fire safety arrangements amid ongoing concerns in the wake of the Cairneyhill Primary fire.

The EIS has written to education chiefs seeking reassurances after last month’s blaze destroyed a large part of the village school, with a subsequent investigation confirming the building did not have smoke alarms fitted.

Now, following a revelation that only 72% of Fife’s school estate is fitted with smoke detectors, the issue is set to be given greater scrutiny, with the matter likely to be raised at a health and safety forum next month. EIS Fife spokesman David Farmer said: “There is a real need to be looking at this.

“When it comes to new schools, contractors seem to be putting smoke detectors in as standard. These schools have got the detection equipment, but the older schools don’t.

“While there may be no statutory responsibility, there is also the need to reassure everyone involved in Fife schools. We understand there’s a cost issue, but for us, it’s about safety.”

Fife Council has stressed it follows Scottish Government fire safety guidance, with “robust systems” in place.