BAFSA’s chief executive, Ali Perry, has welcomed the news this week that an expert working group is to be set up by The Scottish Government to consider if sprinkler systems should be made compulsory in historic buildings that are converted into hotels.

The Scottish Government’s decision comes in the wake of The Cameron House Hotel fire in Loch Lomond in December 2017, which resulted in the deaths of two men. A Fatal Accident Inquiry into their deaths heard that sprinkler systems could “significantly slow the spread of flame and would extend the margin of safety for available escape time”.

The inquiry heard it was a “real or likely possibility” that if sprinklers had been installed and had “worked to inhibit the extent and spread of the fire and smoke”, Mr Midgley and Mr Dyson would “have been able safely to escape the building”.

Following that inquiry, the Scottish Government set up a short-life working group to consider the recommendations made. It has now confirmed it will set up an expert working group “to review the mandating of automatic fire suppression systems where historic buildings are being converted into hotels”.

Ali Perry says: “BAFSA has been engaging with Scottish Building Standards on this issue and we hope to be involved in further discussions going forward.”

BAFSA’s Stewart Kidd has written an in-depth case study entitled: The Cameron House Hotel Fire – Lessons Learnt, which will be published in the next issue of BAFSA Focus out next month. 

He will also be giving a presentation on this to BAFSA members at the BAFSA AGM afternoon seminar on Thursday 9th November at The Liverpool Marriott City Centre Hotel.