ALARM has been raised over the state of Helensburgh and Lomond's four fire stations, with an MSP claiming that the public are being put at risk.

Katy Clark, Scottish Labour's spokesperson for community safety, says she was shocked by the contents of a report by fire chiefs, detailing the conditions and suitability of 356 buildings across Scotland.

The survey, supplied by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) under Freedom of Information, also raised major concerns about stations serving Helensburgh, Cove, Garelochhead and Arrochar.

Though the suitability of Helensburgh for fire fighting was described as good, its condition was assessed as bad.

The condition of Cove was given as satisfactory, but it was rated poor for suitability.

Both Arrochar and Garelochhead were marked as satisfactory, but their suitability for fire fighting was described as poor.

Katy Clark, who is also a regional MSP for West Scotland, which includes Helensburgh and Lomond, commented: “It is astounding to see the extent to which Scotland’s fire estate is falling apart.

“Firefighters, who work so hard to ensure the safety of people in our communities, need to be well equipped, well-resourced, well protected and well paid to do the job they do.

"The Scottish Government has had 15 years to modernise the estate. The real terms cuts in that time do not occur in a vacuum – they affect response times to emergency incidents, putting the public at risk.

“These figures must be a wake-up call – it’s time to modernise Scotland’s crumbling fire estate.”

In the SFRS report half of Scotland stations are described as being in “bad” or “poor” condition, with a further 47 percent assessed as being of “bad” or “poor” suitability.

The report found that one in four stations across Scotland did not have shower facilities for female firefighters.

However Helensburgh, Cove, Arrochar and Garelochead all had them in place.

The report also found that 40 percent of Scottish fire stations are 50 years old or more, with Helensburgh having opened in 1975, Arrochar in 1981, Garelochead in 1985, and Cove in 2001.

It further highlighted the fact that most fire stations in Scotland do not operate gender neutral facilities. However Arrochar does have a gender neutral toilet.

Of the four stations only Helensburgh is operated full time, with the other three being served by on call staff.

Iain Morris, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service's acting director of asset management, said: "The safety and welfare of our staff who serve communities across Scotland remains a priority for us.

"We are fully committed to addressing any challenges around the repair and maintenance of our buildings as we work tirelessly to balance our budget.

“We recognise that there are a number of fire stations where there are limited welfare facilities.

"These are already identified within our ongoing capital investment requirements and plans."

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “Effective fire safety remains a priority for the Scottish Government and we have continued our commitment to support service delivery and reform with an increase of £14.4m in budget cover for SFRS in 2023-24.

“Decisions on the allocation of resources from the Scottish Government are a matter for SFRS and we will continue to work closely with them to identify the funding they need.”