Selkirk ‘wee monkeys’ are risking their lives

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Youngsters in Selkirk are taking huge risks with their lives by scaling the scaffolding which is currently enveloping the town hall.

Community policeman Conal McEwan told the town’s community council that over the festive period, police had received two calls from worried residents saying the kids were climbing the scaffolding.

He said: “Both times, by the time we got there, the youngsters had gone.

“They don’t realise just how dangerous a pastime this is.”

Community councillor Jim Stillie told PC McEwan: “I am really worried about anyone having access to the scaffolding.

“Surely health and safety requirements would ensure that it was impossible to climb from ground level. Surely they take the ladders away.”

PC McEwan replied: “They contractors do comply with everything that is required of them.

“What the kids are doing is climbing up by using the lugs, finding footholds and handholds in much the same manner as they would do when climbing a tree.

“They are, quite literally, wee monkeys.”

Mr Stillie said: “If one of them is injured, then is the contractor liable?”

Councillor Gordon Edgar replied: “Not if the contractor has taken every precaution ... which in this case, they have.”

PC McEwan added: “We have to get the word around our young people.

“It’s pretty simple, don’t do it, don’t take the risk, and don’t dare others to do it.”