Cameron House fire inquiry to go ahead this month

A fatal accident inquiry (FAI) into a hotel blaze that killed two guests will get under way later this month.

Simon Midgley, 32, and his partner Richard Dyson, 38, died in a fire at Cameron House Hotel at Loch Lomond in December 2017.

Hotel operator Cameron House Resort (Loch Lomond) Ltd was previously fined £500,000 and night porter Christopher O’Malley was given a community payback order over the fire.

A preliminary hearing on Tuesday confirmed an FAI to investigate the incident will be going ahead on August 15 at Paisley Sheriff Court.

Photo issued by the Crown Office showing an aerial view of the damage to the Cameron House Hotel. A fatal accident inquiry (FAI) into a hotel blaze that killed two guests will get under way later this month

Lawyers representing Cameron House, staff who worked at the hotel at the time of the fire, the Crown and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service appeared via video link before Sheriff Thomas McCartney.

The hearing heard that a statement by resort manager at the time Andrew Rogers is to be received to form part of the evidence ahead of the hearing’s start date.

The legal representatives discussed matters regarding physical evidence being provided at the official hearing, including an improved floor plan of the hotel and relevant CCTV footage, and the availability of witnesses.

Sheriff McCartney concluded the hearing saying: “I shall allow the statement by Mr Andrew Roger to be received”, adding, “I shall continue to the inquiry which has been assigned for 15 August in Paisley Sheriff Court as a live hearing and subsequent days.”

He confirmed the date for hearing submissions following evidence to be 7 November.

Dumbarton Sheriff Court heard in January last year that the fire started after O’Malley emptied ash and embers from a fuel fire into a polythene bag and placed it in a cupboard which contained combustibles including kindling and newspapers.

Cameron House Resort (Loch Lomond) Ltd, owner and operator of the hotel, admitted failing to take the fire safety measures necessary to ensure the safety of employees and guests between January 14, 2016 and December 18, 2017.

The company admitted two charges of breaching the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005.

O’Malley admitted breaching sections of health and safety laws which relate to the obligation on an employee to take reasonable care for the health and safety of people affected by their acts or omissions at work.