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SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT BUILDING SAFETY SCARES

Roof safety systems corroded and concerns over stability of granite cladding   

The Daily Record has reported that “potentially lethal faults” have been found on the roof of the Scottish Parliament building in Edinburgh.

The faults came to light after contractors refused to carry out maintenance work claiming it is “dangerous for workers and the public”. The problem centres around fall arrest anchor points which are reported as badly corroded.

Specialist contractor TRAC International maintain the seven-year-old parliament building but have now “banned their staff from continuing work”.  A Holyrood source told the Record:

“This came to light when one of the TRAC workers hooked his safety harness on to the anchor point and it moved. Then they discovered the point was only held in place by a rusty metal fixing. They were absolutely staggered. The extent of the problem is still being assessed but, in the worst case, it could mean the parliament may have to close for a period of time.”

Granite cladding panels loose

The roof problems are preventing repairs to granite cladding panels on the Holyrood building. It is alleged that some panels are held in place by “makeshift wooden wedges”.

The building is clad with around 1000 panels. In May 2011 a panel came loose causing closure of the MSPs’ bar and restaurant for fear that it may fall through the glass roof. 

Contractors removed the section but a further 50 granite are said to be loose. The panels are attached with four stainless steel bolts which are “showing signs of rust”.

Architectural writer David Black said the structure:

is such a quirky building, it has unresolved engineering issues and it will be the taxpayer who will be saddled with the cost of the repairs. The building has been completely over-designed.”

A Scottish Parliament spokeswoman has now told the Record:

“There are no safety concerns regarding use of the building. The panels are structurally sound and secured. Four panels have been wedged ahead of permanent adjustments being made purely for aesthetic reasons. They have never been a public safety concern.

We commissioned a full check of all 201 posts. This identified 14 posts with cause for further investigation. On October 5, we brought in our structural engineers and a roof access specialist to offer expert advice. We thern took the decision temporarily to suspend the use of our roof access systems while we investigate the matter.

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One Response to “SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT BUILDING SAFETY SCARES”

  1. Terrified workers down tools after deathtrap alert on Scottish Parliament roof – Scottish Daily Record | patricksreed Says:

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