Residents who live in the streets surrounding a primary school which went on fire in May are to have their gutters cleaned following an asbestos scare.
Glasgow City Council undertook the work to clean gutters around St Mark’s Primary School, in the east end of the city, after fibres were found in several roofs in the area during checks which were undertaken in the weeks after the blaze.
Houses in the G31 area near the site of the school in Muiryfauld Drive, including St Marks Street, Edenwood Street, Dalton Street and Dalton Crescent have all had letters to say their gutters are to be cleaned.
The gutter cleaning comes less than a month after gardens in the area were blitzed by the council during the initial asbestos scare after the fire.
Residents were warned not to use their gardens until the land had been uncontaminated.
Fire broke out at the unoccupied school on May 23 and at the time of the incident local people were asked to stay indoors and close windows over fears of asbestos in the air.
When the fire was put out, tests showed that debris found in the surrounding area might have contained asbestos so the local authority began a clean up operation.
During the garden clean up, asbestos fibres were found in the roofs of some of the houses.
Demolition work began on the school – which was closed by the council in October 2010 - two days after the fire.
Local MSP John Mason has written to SEPA regarding the incident. He said: “This latest development is a real cause for concern.
“I recently wrote to SEPA and the Glasgow City Council to raise this very issue.
“I understand that SEPA are now carrying out an inquiry and I hope they can do this both thoroughly and quickly. There are real questions here and the residents around Kilmany and St Marks deserve answers.”
Mr Mason has been critical of the council for failing to demolish the building after it was no longer in use, after he had held a recent meeting about anti social behaviour around the building.
He said: “Since late last year, my constituency office has been receiving a steady stream of complaints about anti-social behaviour in this area.
“With over 90 recorded incidents in the last three months, the statistics speak for themselves.
"When I was a councillor, Glasgow City Council had a policy of demolishing schools as soon as possible after they'd been closed.”
Mr Mason added: “That prevented vandalism and also the fears of what could happen to a child who broke into an empty school building and could have been seriously hurt.
“It is disappointing that the splitting up of the council into bodies like City Property seems to have prevented what was previously a good policy.
"The council and City Property have got some real explaining to do."
Thompsons Solicitors have set up a dedicated service to help worried residents who are concerned they may be put at risk of exposure to toxic asbestos fibres.
Chris Gordon, asbestos expert and partner at Thompsons Solicitors said: “Breathing in just a small amount of asbestos dust can put your health at serious risk.
“It’s a silent killer – it can be in your system for many years before symptoms show. Most victims don’t know they’ve been affected until they develop shortness of breath or chest or abdominal pain.
“We work closely with Clydeside Action on Asbestos and the victims and families of those affected by asbestos poisoning to get justice and to ensure that the community is protected from potentially fatal health hazards such as this.
“We’re committed to the local community and we’re on-hand to provide assistance to anyone concerned with these recent developments.”
A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said: "We expect the work to clean gutters to be complete sometime next week.
"We have apologised to residents for the disruption, which is the result of a fire which was started deliberately."
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