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Older computers will be removed from use in Highland Council properties across the region following the fire at Park Primary in Invergordon, Ross-shire

By Louise Glen

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Chief Executive Donna Manson at the site of the school.
Chief Executive Donna Manson at the site of the school.

OLDER computers used by Highland Council officers, or on council property, will be removed from service immediately.

The move came after it is believed a faulty laptop was the cause of a major fire that devastated a school in Invergordon on Monday morning.

The commitment came from Highland Council’s chief executive Donna Manson as the clear up of 200-pupil Park Primary School got under way this week.

The fire, that took hold of the school shortly before 10am, was started after a teacher and two children turned on a laptop computer.

One eyewitness said it “just went up in flames”.

At a visit to the devastated school on Tuesday afternoon, Ms Manson said she was removing all older computing equipment from service.

She said laptops would be upgraded from a contingency fund, and as part of an ongoing upgrade of council equipment.

In response to questions about the fire, Ms Manson said her first priority was to the children and staff, who will restart lessons in Invergordon Academy.

She said: “We want to make sure children and staff are confident about their move to Invergordon Academy.”

She continued: “Older computers will no longer be used throughout the Highlands, but I can confirm there are no issues with Chromebooks, and pupils should continue to use these.

“We have made a report to the Health and Safety Executive and we will be working with local and national agencies to determine the cause of the fire, and any actions that we will be required to take.

“I can say that Park Primary School will need to be demolished.”

The council is giving each pupil £100 to replace belongings lost in the blaze.

Some 50 firefighters tackled the fire. Crews attended from Inverness, Invergordon and elsewhere.

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