Around 40 firefighters battled a blaze at a derelict building in Glasgow in the early hours of last Thursday (18th September).
The fire on Shieldhall Road was the second at a derelict school in the Govan area of the city’s Southside in two nights, after Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) crews had dealt with a similar incident at nearby Broomloan Road on Tuesday.
The latest incident saw two fire appliances mobilised from Govan along with a third from Springburn following a call from Police Scotland around 2am.
Group Manager Joseph Gallagher, the incident commander, said: “Our first responders reached the scene in five minutes to find the fire had already taken hold of substantial parts of the first floor and the roof space.
“They immediately moved to tackle the flames and requested additional resources, which saw five more appliances sent from Yorkhill, Renfrew and Milngavie.
“Multiple jets were in use – positioned strategically around the fire – and this successfully brought the flames under control by 4am, although crews continued dampening down the site for several hours after this.”
The last SFRS appliance left the scene at 8am, meaning firefighters and resources from Glasgow City, Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire were required for around six hours.
Officers made clear that having to attend reckless or deliberate fires is not only a significant drain on the taxpayer, but also puts at risk those responsible, the firefighters called to respond and innocent members of the public.
Group Manager Iain Goodlet, the head of protection and protection for the City of Glasgow, explained: “We have seen two incidents in two nights that have taken up significant fire and rescue resources.
“The crews and appliances required to tackle needless fires are unavailable to respond to house fires, road traffic collisions or any other emergency that happen during that time.
“This obviously risks causing delays in getting help to an incident where every second is crucial to rescuing a person in immediate danger.
“Anyone responsible for setting fires need to know there could be truly horrendous consequences and they need to consider whether they could live with themselves if someone was killed.
“It’s also important everyone know that we work incredibly closely with our colleagues from the police to investigate fires and see that anyone setting them is identified and held to account for their reckless, criminal actions.”
Anyone with information on those responsible for deliberately setting fires should call police on the non-emergency number 101. Information can be given anonymously through Crimestoppers Scotland by calling 0800 555 111.