Arbroath caravan holiday ends in flames

Red Lion Caravan Park, Arbroath
Red Lion Caravan Park, Arbroath

A return to Arbroath turned into holiday hell for an elderly couple and their daughter as their caravan fireplace burst into flames.

Julie Gowans and her mother and father booked into the Red Lion Holiday Park for a two week stay in June.

Ms Gowans father was born and raised in Arbroath and the family have visited the area many times since.

On the final night of their holiday, after a stay plagued with complaints including arriving for their first night to be met without gas provision, a fire broke out in the caravan.

“We were sitting in the lounge area and because it had been raining the caravan felt quite chilly so we put the fire on.

“Suddenly there was a bang from the fire and then a wall of flames shot up the wall.

“I shouted at my parents to get out of the caravan. My father managed to shut the gas bottle off, which he told me was hissing.

“I ran to the bar shouting for help not knowing what was happening the van.”

The fire brigade, ambulance service and Police Scotland arrived on the scene.

“The fireman said that it was quick thinking on our part to turn the gas off or it could have been much worse.

“It’s just lucky that we weren’t seriously hurt. Given the fact that my mum is 83 and dad is 76 everyone was obviously concerned for their health especially the shock that set in afterwards.

“The ambulance service wanted to take my mother to hospital but she didn’t want to go, I think because she was worried about not being able to go home the next morning.

“We were put in another caravan for the remainder of the night, needless to say none of us slept.”

Since the incident Ms Gowans has tried to find out why there was a fault has been unable to get any satisfactory answers.

A spokesperson from the Red Lion Holiday Park said: “Ms Gowans was contacted as soon as we received the engineer’s report to update her of the findings. The cause of this small fire, which resulted in some minor damage to the fireplace, was a manufacturing fault within the fire itself.

“This was a brand new caravan and all of Red Lion’s hire fleet are Gas Safe certified with comprehensive testing carried out by an external engineer.”