Asbestos removal secures life-saving alarm system in Sidmouth

Lymebourne Park in Sidmouth. Ref shs 4849-02-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

Lymebourne Park in Sidmouth. Ref shs 4849-02-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton - Credit: Archant

A life-saving emergency alarm system has been protected from becoming non-operational after asbestos was removed from its Sidmouth HQ.

East Devon District Council’s (EDDC) cabinet will be asked today (Wednesday) to sign off the disposal of asbestos from the basement of the Home Safeguard offices in Lymebourne Park, although the work has already been carried out.

Users of the 24-hour service wear a personal alarm that can be pressed in an emergency to call for help – but the kit relies on servers that had been rendered ‘out of bounds’ by the discovery of the material.

The agenda for Wednesday’s EDDC cabinet meeting says: “At any time of the day or night, access might be required in order to reach the server. Inability to do this risks the entire system of Home Safeguard becoming non-operational. [This] could lead to loss of lives if the alarm system is unable to function.”

An EDDC spokeswoman told the Herald: “The asbestos removal works to the building have now been completed safely and successfully. This work had no impact on the service as it was carried out overnight.

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“Currently, the service has approximately 1,300 sheltered residents and 3,500 private customers.

“As with any service as important as this which relies on people being about to contact us to help them, we have a fully tested procedure in place to provide 24-seven back-up, should there be any issues with our servers.”

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