A mother who survived a hotel fire that killed two said her 10-year-old son was still anxious and had trouble sleeping five years later.
Hannah Munns was staying at the Cameron House Hotel with her husband and then their five-year-old child when the fire broke out in December 2017.
They were in a room across from Simon Midgley, 32, and his partner, Richard Dyson, 38, from London. He died when the flames caught fire at the five-star hotel on the banks of Loch Lomond.
A fatal accident investigation (FAI) was held at Paisley Sheriff Court last year to determine whether lessons could be learned from the disaster.
In a statement released Wednesday, Sheriff Thomas McCartney said there were “a number of flaws in the operating systems that contributed to the fatality of the accident” and made a number of recommendations.
Ms Munns said that although she and her family managed to escape, the fire had a great impact on her son.
He told the BBC: “It was terrible. The thing I was most touched by is my son.
“She was five and now she is 10 and still not sleeping. It will not be far from us. He will not stay away from us.
“He’s not going to do everything a normal 10-year-old would do because he had that moment when you realized you wouldn’t live forever.”
“He learned at the age of five that these things can go wrong, and so he has really serious anxiety issues.
“It breaks my heart to learn at such a young age that things can go wrong.
“And it affects your life every day.”
The fire started when hot ashes were thrown into the concierge’s locker in the main reception area.
Hotel operator Cameron House Resort (Loch Lomond) was fined £500,000, while night watchman Christopher O’Malley was given community service.
In his 122-page FAI decision, Mr McCartney decided that all operators in Scotland should “have up-to-date and robust procedures, informed by a risk assessment, to ensure the removal and disposal of ash from open fires in hotels”. safely, thus avoiding the risk of fire from careless disposal of ash”.
He also recommended that the Scottish Government consider introducing a rule for a sprinkler system – or “active fire suppression system” – that would be made a requirement when converting historic buildings into hotels.
Mr McCartney concluded that Mr Midgley and Mr Dyson died as a result of “inhalation of smoke and fire gases from the hotel fire”.
Ms Munns from Leeds welcomed the publication of the report.
He said: “It’s as if someone listened and real problems arose.
They notice anything going wrong that could have prevented the two men from dying.
The Dumbarton Sheriff’s Court heard that the fire started in January 2021, after O’Malley dumped ash and embers from a fuel fire into a polyethylene bag and then placed it in a cabinet containing kindling and newspapers.
The hotel company admitted that it did not take the necessary measures to ensure the safety of its guests and employees between January 14, 2016 and December 18, 2017.
He pleaded guilty to two charges of violating the 2005 Fire (Scotland) Act.
O’Malley acknowledged that an employee violated health and safety laws regarding his obligation to exercise reasonable care for the health and safety of those affected by his actions or omissions in the workplace.
Since the hotel reopened in September 2021, revised fire safety procedures have been in place and new fire safety measures are said to be in place, including sprinklers and updated alarms.