Aberdeenshire hotel, Meldrum House Estates has been fined £10,000 for breaches of health and safety law following an incident in 2012, when a fifteen month old girl fell from an unsecured window of a first floor room in the hotel.
During a hearing earlier this year at Aberdeen Sheriff Court, the hotel pled guilty to health and safety failings. It is reported that there was a failure to ensure that windows in upstairs rooms were either fixed in a closed position, or fitted with a device to prevent them being opened in a way that would expose people to a safety risk.
At the hearing yesterday, it was reported that Sheriff Amelia Cowan reduced the maximum fine of £20,000 to £10,000 to reflect the guilty plea, and “low” risk of the incident occurring. Further, it is said that the hotel’s good health and safety record was noted, and the fact that they had taken responsibility at an early stage.
The case is an example of the risks inherent in the hotel industry. Despite steps having been taken to ensure safety, it was still deemed that a criminal offence had been committed. It is reported that Sheriff Cowan stated that "the risk of such an accident happening was low. This was an isolated incident. I can understand but can't condone the facts that led to this accident happening."