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Task force to tackle ‘death trap’ factory

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By Fiona Reid
Dumfries and West
Task force to tackle 'death trap' factory

A TASK force has been set up to tackle a derelict Dumfries factory which has been branded ‘a potential death trap’.

Dumfries and Galloway Council, Police Scotland and Scottish Fire and Rescue have established a multiagency group to address health and safety risks at the former Interfloor site at Heathhall.
A statement from the group said: “Public safety is of our first priority and we would re-iterate that the public should stay clear of these buildings and the surrounding area.
“Parents are asked to reinforce this message to their children — know where your children are and inform them of the dangers of playing on such sites.”
The move comes after South Scotland MSPColin Smyth called for urgent moves — with residents raising concerns.
Mr Smyth said: “The way the site was pretty much abandoned by Interfloor was bad enough but the owners have simply left it to fall into serious disrepair.”
He added: “It is bad enough it is being left to rot and become an eyesore, but the lack of proper security means it is fast becoming a potential death trap.”
Local resident Brian Little met withMr Smyth.
He said: “I worked in this factory for 33 years and it is just so sad to see the state of it today.”
He added: “There have been multiple instances recently of young people getting into the building through the broken windows and the gaps in the fences.
“I would dread to think of the consequences if anything were to happen to them in there.”
Last month Scottish Fire and Rescue were forced to attend two blazes in the course of just three days, and issuedawarning about the dangers of malicious fire-setting.
Shepherd Chartered Surveyors in Dumfries are marketing the property, which has a listed facade, but did not respond to an approach for comment from either themselves or the owner.
A statement from the newly formed task force said: “We are currently in consultation with the owners of the Interfloor site regarding security and the clean-up process, but would ask the public to avoid the site at this time whilst we monitor the situation.”

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