Owner terrified in gas-threat street

Homeowner Jennifer Barnett from Gorebridge, Midlothian, is petrified to be still living on a gas-hit street and has criticised Environmental Healths handling of the situation. Picture; SWNS
Homeowner Jennifer Barnett from Gorebridge, Midlothian, is petrified to be still living on a gas-hit street and has criticised Environmental Healths handling of the situation. Picture; SWNS
0
Have your say

A HOMEOWNER has been left petrified to be still living on a gas-hit street after dozens of her neighbours were evacuated due to health risks.

The potentially deadly carbon dioxide leaks were first was discovered after residents were hospitalised in 2013 with suspected poisoning.

The gas had escaped from former coal shafts below.

As a result, 64 homes around Newbyres Crescent, Gorebridge, Midlothian, had to be completely evacuated before being demolished.

It was found that the properties had not been fitted with the protective gas membranes needed when building on top of former mine workings.

And it has now emerged that a number of houses on nearby Newbyres Avenue are also affected by the gas – causing further evacuations.

Four families, who rented their properties through a housing association, were forced to pack up their belongings only recently.

But a private householder who still lives on the street is concerned about what she says is a “lack of information”. Jennifer Barnett, 29, said: “All we have been getting is that these are questions for your lawyers, and get in touch with your insurance.

“We are private homeowners and feel penalised as we are out of the loop.

“We want to know the outcome. I’m petrified. I don’t think I would get another mortgage if this property is demolished.

“I can’t help but think the whole street will be demolished but at the moment they are trying to find a way around it.

“As soon as Newbyres Crescent was evacuated I thought they would have tested all the houses on the coalfields here. ”

A spokesman for Midlothian Council said: “In September 2016 all residents on the Newbyres Avenue development, including the private sector properties, were informed of the ongoing investigation regarding possible elevated levels of carbon dioxide entering residential properties.

“Environmental health has regular contact with residents and reassures them on their day-to-day concerns by providing advice and conducting on the spot tests for CO2.

“A copy of the results was given to this resident during a visit to provide advice, including an information leaflet which as jointly produced by NHS Lothian and Midlothian Council on the health effects of CO2.

“A CO2 monitor and a warning alarm system was sourced and installed in the living room of the property the following day. Monitoring and warning systems are in place in all the affected houses while investigation of the source and consideration of the long-term interventions is ongoing.”