Falling masonry is a risk in Edinburgh - here's how the law protects you

Last week fears were raised that people were at risk of serious injury from falling masonry after a catalogue of problems with Edinburgh’s ageing buildings were exposed in the media.

This week’s revelation followed an earlier investigation that discovered there were 178 reported incidents of falling masonry in Edinburgh in just one year – allegedly, with little or no follow-up repair work carried out.

Digby Brown believes this is a serious and justified concern that rightly needs addressed before someone is seriously, or even fatally, injured.

Simon Hammond, Partner at our Edinburgh office, said: "Falling masonry is an avoidable risk which history has taught as can prove fatal if proper care is not taken.

"A building owner, whether a person or organisation, has a legal duty to maintain their property for the very simple reason that doing so saves lives.

"In a historic city like Edinburgh with centuries-old infrastructure and densely populated pedestrian zones it's so important these buildings are maintained to a safe standard.

"Citizens and visitors to this city should not have to wait for a tragedy to happen before action is taken."

If someone was to be injured by falling masonry then a personal injury solicitor can help you secure compensation by using occupier’s liability (OL) or public liability (PL) civil laws.

In these types of no win, no fee cases we will work with leading experts to investigate the building and its owners to establish:

•    What caused the masonry to fall?
•    Was loose masonry a known risk?
•    What steps, if any, did the property owner take to inspect and maintain the building?
•    What is the process for routinely maintaining masonry work and who carries out the work?
•    How are building defects reported, recorded and remedied?

By finding answers to these simple questions we will be able to establish if someone was negligent and if we can find solid evidence of this then we can help secure you fair damages for being injured.

We have proven experience in this area. We previously helped a client who suffered after a 100-year-old window crashed to the ground from two storeys up – an incident that was also highlighted by the media.

No one expects to be struck by falling masonry while simply walking, wheeling or cycling but if you are then laws exist to help you recover losses.