Praise for staff after leisure pool drama

Debbie Munro and Eire Meekison enjoy a swim at East Sands Leisure Centre
Debbie Munro and Eire Meekison enjoy a swim at East Sands Leisure Centre

Staff at East Sands Leisure Centre have been robustly defended over their response to last week’s chemical leak following a claim the evacuation was ‘a shambles’.

Nineteen people - including five children - were taken to hospital with breathing difficulties last Tuesday after a potentially-fatal gas leaked into the centre’s swimming pool.

But the evacuation process was criticised by Gemma Kroegler , who was in the pool at the time of the incident with her husband Gary and two-year-old son Archie.

She claimed the staff failed to follow safety procedures and that she and her family were left standing in the car park in their wet swimming costumes.

Gemma (33) was due to meet with lawyers yesterday (Thursday) wth a view to possibly taking legal action against the centre’s operators, Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.

She says she‘s ‘looking for answers’ about how the incident happened and how it was handled.

However, Gemma’s criticism sparked anger among other families who were in the pool at the time, some of whom returned to the centre this week to express their appreciation to the staff.

Debbie Munro, who was caught up in the incident along with Duncan and Eire Meekison, said: “The staff were absolutely amazing.

‘‘We were ushered out of the pool and through the changing room and out the main door at the front. My friend’s daughter had nothing at all except for her swim suit and swimming aids.

‘‘The staff brought her a towel so that I could wrap her in it and keep her warm.

“Duncan and I have nothing but praise for the staff and what they did.

‘‘The fact that they dealt with it in the way they did made the experience so much easier for Duncan’s daughter Eire – now all she talks about are the firemen helping daddy and asking to go swimming again.

“We cannot praise the staff highly enough and they are a credit to the leisure centre. This will not put us off going back again as we are more than satisfied that we are in safe hands if anything else should happen.”

Allan Reid, area leisure manager for Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, said: “The events of last week were extremely rare, but, it is a credit to staff that they acted so professionally.”