More than fifty firefighters were called to the Fiddler’s Elbow in Picardy Place, Edinburgh in the early hours of the morning after a ceiling collapsed prompting fears that people may be trapped in the building (27 January).
Fire crews were alerted shortly before 2.30am after a report that the first floor ceiling in the city centre premises had collapsed into the ground floor of the four story building. Five fire appliances and two specialist Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) teams were mobilised and quickly on the scene. They set up initial cordons and deployed firefighters into the affected area to assess whether anyone was trapped.
Management also began an roll call of staff known to be working that night. Fortunately it was quickly established that everyone was accounted for and firefighters ensured that the entire building was searched before declaring that everyone was safely out of the building.
A spokeswoman for Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service said:
“Firefighters including specially trained USAR personnel were quickly on the scene, setting up safety cordons and beginning the process of checking for any potential casualties. It seems the ceiling collapse had triggered the fire alarm system allowing many of those still in the building to leave safely before emergency services arrived.
“When crews arrived on site it was clear there had been a significant collapse of the first floor ceiling into the ground floor. Cordons were set up to allow crews to begin a methodical search of the area. Firefighters also isolated power and utilities for safety reasons and contacted Building Control to attend the scene and give advice on the potential risks within the building from the incident.
“Once it was clear that everyone was accounted for and all had been done to make the area as safe as possible until the morning, crews were able to leave the incident just after 4am.”