Two pensioners were taken to hospital suffering from burns after using a tanning lamp to keep warm. Robert McCartney, 74, and a friend were found in a flat by an ambulance crew after a stench of gas was reported. The pair had slept for as long as five hours next to the UV light designed for short tan sessions. They had burns to their faces and eyes and were struggling to see.
The Scottish Ambulance Service said: “We believe a heater was left on for a few hours, we think to get some heat. When they woke up they had burns to their faces and eyes. They were both taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary after complaining of problems in seeing. As far as we’re aware no other people were involved.”
The two men were found at 7.30am at a tenement in the Gorgie area of Edinburgh. There was still a strong smell of gas hours after the rescue. Robert, who was named by neighbours, recently featured in an article on the city council news website. He told how he had worked for the cleansing department for 18 years. The other man is also in his 70s.
Both are still being treated in hospital. A neighbour said: “The first I knew about it was when the gas man came this morning to check for carbon monoxide. The next thing I knew there was an ambulance. I don’t really know Mr McCartney – he keeps himself to himself.” A fire crew were also sent to the incident in Wheatfield Road. Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue said: “People first thought it to be a gas leak but it turned out that there was no leak at the property.”