Page last updated at 17:07 GMT, Thursday, 4 March 2010

Safety rules call after mine shaft death

Alison Hume
Ms Hume fell down the shaft in July 2008 as she made her way home

Health and safety rules which may have stopped rescue workers pulling an injured women from a mine shaft must be reviewed, an MSP has said.

SNP MSP Willie Coffey called on Alex Salmond to "ensure the government reviews health and safety guidance operated by the emergency services".

A Fatal Accident Inquiry is being heard into the circumstances of the death of his constituent Alison Hume.

Mr Coffey raised his concerns at First Minister's questions at Holyrood.

Mr Salmond told MSPs that the Health and Safety Executive and Chief Fire Officers Association had been in talks to prepare a "high-level" statement on operational guidance.

He said: "I can confirm that the Scottish fire and rescue advisory unit will take part in the launch of that statement on Friday 12 March, with a similar event planned from the Scottish fire and rescue service shortly thereafter."

Heart attack

Ms Hume fell about 40ft down a disused mine shaft in Galston, Ayrshire, in July 2008.

The fatal accident inquiry at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court has been told that officers from Strathclyde Police, Strathclyde Fire and Rescue, the Scottish Ambulance Service and mountain rescue teams were all called to the scene.

It has also heard that fire crews could not aid Ms Hume because regulations stated their equipment was for saving themselves, not members of the public.

The 44-year-old solicitor, who worked with the Renfrewshire legal firm McCusker McElroy and Co, was discovered by her daughter and eventually freed by mountain rescue experts.

She died after suffering a heart attack just as she was brought to the surface.



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SEE ALSO
Probe told of mine shaft collapse
03 Mar 10 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Inquiry told of mine rescue delay
03 Mar 10 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Probe into mine shaft death opens
01 Mar 10 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Woman dies after 40ft mine fall
26 Jul 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West

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