Harlaw Academy, Aberdeen (Image: Google)

Hundreds of pupils and staff have been evacuated from a Scotish school after gas was found in the building.

#gasleak #schoolbuilding #scotland

All kids and teachers from the 950-capacity Harlaw Academy in Aberdeen were taken from the school on Wednesday after the find.

Parents of pupils at the Victorian-era school were texted by education bosses warning that ‘trace amounts’ of gas had been found.

A council spokesman confirmed that the school had been closed as gas had been detected, it is hoped the closure would be temporary.

On social media a text apparently from school bosses to parents was shared locally.

It read: “This morning trace amounts of gas have been found at Harlaw Academy.

“The gas supply was isolated immediately and the school was safely evacuated.

“We are awaiting a safety inspection by the gas board and the school building cannot be in use until the inspection is completed.”

A later text said: “We have taken the decision to close Harlaw Academy for the day and send pupils home.

“This will be done at 11.30am and processes will be in place to assist pupils who need.

“We will send an update to parents as soon as this is available.”



Local councillor Martin Greig said the situation could have been ‘catastrophic’.

He said: “The gas problem is really worrying and it is reassuring that this was detected quickly and the building evacuated without delay.

“The pupils have already experienced a lot of disruption because of having to cope with the pandemic.

“Hopefully this fault will be identified and a permanent fix will be made.

“This kind of situation is potentially harmful and even catastrophic. It is an old building and it needs to be constantly monitored and maintained to keep the school community safe”

A city council spokesman said: “This morning trace amounts of gas were found in Harlaw Academy this morning.

“The gas supply was isolated immediately and the school was safely evacuated.

“We are awaiting a safety inspection by the Gas Board, and the school building cannot be in use until the inspection has been completed.

“As the safety of our pupils is of paramount importance we took the decision to close Harlaw Academy at 11am for the day and send them home.


Source: Daily Record




  • A range of compact commercial semi-instantaneous gas condensing water heaters
  • Perfect for applications requiring direct contact with soft, softened and chlorinated water
  • Highly efficient modular design offers continuity of service in one appliance


Commercial hot water and heating specialist Adveco, announces the AD range. A new generation of sleekly designed, modulating commercial floor-standing gas condensing water heaters to be used with a buffer for high demand semi-instantaneous hot water applications in sports & leisure centres, hotels, spas, schools, stadia, and large commercial buildings.

Bill Sinclair, technical director, Adveco said, “The titanium-stabilised stainless-steel construction of the AD range’s heat exchangers is the perfect response to counter the concerns of corrosion in soft, or softened water applications. Compact, lightweight yet still powerful, the AD’s patented space-saving design makes it equally applicable to both new projects or renovation work where a lack of space would traditionally stall or quickly drive up costs of a project.”

With each water heater composed of one to four 70 kW heat exchangers, the AD range offers appliances from 70kW up to 280 kW. This approach optimises the supplied output (up to 160 litres/minute) ensuring maximum efficiency when providing DHW. Models with multiple integrated heat exchangers offer load balancing for optimal long-life operation and inbuilt redundancy guaranteeing continuity of service.

Tough and efficient, AD water heaters are all equipped with premix burners made of Fecralloy metal fibre for large modulation range with excellent functionality at extremely high temperatures. Using a premix burner ensures the AD requires less gas, making it more cost-effective, plus reducing harmful NOX and CO emissions. The AD’s heat exchangers will also work in direct contact with chlorinated mains water.

The AD range can be configured to operate in a cascade of up to eight water heaters. The AD’s controller provides full temperature control and self-check maintenance functions. The controller also accommodates 0-10 input, MODBUS communication, and alarm output for seamless system integration.

Additional information

  • Five-year warranty on AISI 316Ti heat exchangers
  • Compact floor standing arrangement: AD 70T & AD140T H1180 x W600 x D945mm / AD210T & AD280T M1880 x W600 x D896mm
  • High maximum run pressure up to 11 bar
  • Low emissions, built with Class 6 technology for NOₓ at 27 mg/kWh GCV
  • Available for natural gas or LPG
  • Acid condensate neutraliser included
  • Ideal for soft water applications. Hard water areas over 150ppm require use of a water softener down to 100ppm.
  • Supports standard flue systems using low cost 110-160 mm diameter PP

Adveco – Expertly engineered for you. Visit www.adveco.co

Hot water and heating specialist Adveco, offers educational facilities with large hot water demands but space limitations a complete, highly-efficient, low carbon resolution with its Packaged e-Hot Water System.

This prefabricated all-electric water heating system brings together Adveco’s FPi-9 Air Source Heat Pump (ASHP), an Adveco 200L GLC indirect preheat tank, and Adveco 200L GLE direct electric water heater to provide reliable high-temperature water in a convenient, packaged system housed in a compact GRP housing.

Bill Sinclair, technical director, Adveco says, “The Packaged e-Hot Water System leverages all the advantages of off-site construction to provide a standardised, resilient, environmentally friendly, low carbon, hot water system that helps reduce both a school building’s energy consumption and operational costs across its lifetime.”

Adveco’s Packaged e-Hot Water System is ideal for new build projects or refurbishment where space is at a premium. The system makes particular use of the FPi-9 ASHP to provide the system preheat from 10°C to 50°C, supplying 70% of the DHW load.

Offsetting 70% of the energy requirement means the Packaged e-Hot Water System can demonstrate a 47% reduction in energy demands and CO² emissions for the same output of 500,000 litres of hot water each year when compared with a similar direct electric-only system. The reduced energy demand also means operational savings can be added to the capital savings secured during the design, supply, and installation phases.

A completely new specification that lowers the heat intensity, without detrimental effect to the demands for hot water, means the Packaged e-Hot Water System is also more resistant to scale, reducing maintenance demands. Should the lead heat source ever fail, the system incorporates an additional emergency backup 6kW immersion heater to provide resilience and surety of hot water.


Ventilation systems supplier Vortice has launched the DePuro Pro plug and play air purifier specifically developed with double filtration to reduce the number of particles in the air such as bacteria, micro-organisms and viruses.  Designed for all kinds of spaces such as care homes, offices, hotels, universities and the health sector, this is clearly of huge interest as we fight the Covid-19 pandemic.


The DePuro Pro is available in two sizes and comes with HEPA 14 absolute filters, capable of retaining up to 99.995% of microparticles (equivalent diameter 0.3µm) which require periodic replacement, highlighted by the filter status indicator on the control panel.  The DePuro Pro 150 is suitable for rooms up to 50 metres square and the DePuro Pro 300 is suitable for rooms up to 100 metres square.  This new product is highly energy efficient, is easy to handle and has sound absorbing panels making it almost silent to operate.



Ventilation systems which extract are more effective at removing pathogens than an air circulation system.  Furthermore, ventilation systems where the extract vent is in the ceiling divert infectious germs away from individuals thus preventing dispersion into the room.

Vectaire’s Studio and Mini (MVHRs) have been specifically designed for student accommodation, one and two-bedroom apartments, care homes, and hotel rooms.  They run continuously to extract polluted air and replace it with fresh filtered and tempered air.  They are energy efficient, environmentally friendly and economical to run.

They have multiple choice trickle speeds, up to 83% heat exchange efficiency, an integral frost-stat and automatic summer bypass.  They can be set-up using an LCD screen commissioning kit and help to control condensation and pollution giving a comfortable, safe environment in which to live.  They are SAP PCDB listed.



There is an innovative way to make air as fresh as possible within educational buildings, and thus achieve compliance with Government guidelines(*).


Gilberts, the UK’s leading independent air movement specialist has developed a range of modular filter boxes to integrate with its innovative stand-alone hybrid natural ventilation unit, the Mistrale Fusion System (MFS).


Added during initial installation or retro-fitted to the MFS through- wall or through-window unit, the filter units help minimise ingress of unwanted and/or harmful airborne particulates into the internal space.


“Under Government COVID guidance for schools, fresh air from outside should be optimised, and recirculatory solutions set to full fresh air. ” explains Gilberts’ Technical Director Roy Jones. “MFS delivers as standard 8l/s of ventilation: the DfE requirement for a fully-occupied ‘typical’ classroom of 32 people, so exceeds the 5l/s of fresh air the new Guidance recommends.


“Adding a filter box- initially or retrospectively- gives added assurance that any pollutants are removed before the air enters the room. And the MFS is a stand alone solution requiring just one system/zone (classroom), further minimising risk of cross-contamination into other air spaces. Thus, educational establishments can optimise the fresh air supply, without any of the disadvantages of having windows open, with all the associated issues with ingress of pollutants, pollen, noise etc which can adversely affect pupil concentration.”


Gilberts’ core MFS unit comprises a box fitted through the external façade with louvres, that mixes internal and external air to ventilate the internal space. A mixing damper within modulates airflow to allow the new, fresh air to mix with the warm exhaust air, thus extracting its heat without the need for an exchanger. The integrated low energy fan energises to blend the internal air, ensuring an even distribution of airflow, with control over temperature and CO2 levels within, and maintains a comfortable internal environment for occupants.


Just 2 no MFS128 units or 1 x MFS256 unit will ventilate a standard 32-person classroom, achieving the 8litres/sec/person fresh air required by current Department of Education Building Bulletin (BB101) and PBSP guidelines. Each unit also achieves relevant acoustic considerations: its operational ‘noise’ is less than 30dbA and meet SEN (special educational needs) room requirements, and it has been engineered to absorb external noise to keep within the classroom criteria required by BB93. A boost mode also enables a room’s air to be purged for fast redress of air quality and temperature. Heating coil options are also available to provide primary heating to classrooms.


Gilberts has further taken care to attain compliance with Building Regulations Approved Document L. The MFS range attains air leakage better than legislative requirements – 5m3/HR/m2, and a U value of 1W/m2/°C. As with all Gilberts’ ventilation solutions, it delivers efficient weather performance via its bespoke louvre system.


Founded 50+ years ago, privately owned Gilberts is unique in having its own, on-site (85,000ft2) manufacturing facility, producing engineered solutions, with an in-house test centre. Technical expertise is supported with full in-house testing addressing air movement and combining with computational fluid dynamics CFD).



Rinnai is offering all schools FREE energy audits on their hot water systems. The audits are aimed at maximising hot water delivery efficiencies which can result fuel cost savings, alone, of up to 30% on current energy price. The hot water is heated only when it is used – turn the tap off and the energy costs stop immediately.


There are also capital expenditure and carbon savings to be included in the final Whole of Life equation.


The audit, in close co-operation with each school, measures all data concerning hot water use and presents a full and detailed report.


This is all free of any charge.


For the owners of one site a manager commented, “We had an old stored water heating cylinder system, it become completely impractical, inefficient and needlessly expensive to run. “Clearly we needed to change to one that could cater for demand fluctuations – for example, showers running after PE, while the kitchens were also working – without running up huge energy bills. The solution wasn’t hard to find with Rinnai continuous flow hot water delivery.


“We presented the project to Rinnai’s Technical team who came up with the design, configured the sizes of unit required and delivered the system complete and to a very tight timescale – this was key as the existing water heater had developed a leak and I was extremely mindful that the site had to remain operational.


“The Rinnai system has resulted in an energy reduction and gas saving due to higher efficiencies and because we are no longer maintaining large amounts of stored hot water. It’s not rocket science to work that out!” “In terms of gas usage running costs compared to the old wasteful storage system, our bills have virtually been halved since the Rinnai system went live five months ago, which is absolutely tremendous.”


Rinnai is the world’s leading manufacturer of continuous flow hot water systems – it makes and sells 2 million units each year. The range of units can be manifolded to supply, limitless hot water to a school site of any size. This means fast, efficient, temperature-controlled water on demand at the point of delivery – kitchens, showers, accommodation blocks, bathrooms, washrooms. It also means far less space spent on plant rooms and no or little maintenance as all units are proven to be robust with a long, long working life.


Rinnai is the world-leader at the forefront of creating unit cost advantages for end-users. All units and systems are competitively priced, the units offer all technological advances and innovations, all at a similar cost to lower specification competitor models.


Contact the company direct by telephone or email engineer@rinnaiuk.com for your FREE audit on hot water usage on your site



  • Unexpected gas leak was a challenge

Based in Slough, Berkshire, Herschel Grammar School is a selective, co-educational secondary school that was deemed outstanding in all categories in its last Ofsted inspection. Outstanding is the same word used by Judith Vucic, the school’s business manager, when talking about the service and support she receives from Southern Maintenance Solutions (UK) Ltd, (SMS). The company has been providing a full maintenance contract for the school’s heating and plumbing systems for over 10 years. The last two summers have proved particularly busy for the company as in 2019 the old oil boilers were renewed, whilst in 2018, the school had an anxious time when a series of gas leaks were discovered on existing steel pipework in the underground pipe ducts, just weeks before the school was due to open for the new academic year.

“The oil boilers were over 60 years old, more suited for a museum than a vibrant 21st century school with over a thousand pupils, and certainly not very efficient;” commented Vucic. The removal of the boilers, which delivered the hot water and heating for the school’s main three storey building, the sixth form centre and two additional blocks, had been budgeted into the school’s plans since earlier in the year and the work was scheduled and completed during the extended summer holiday period.

SMS were already familiar with the school’s systems having resolved the problem of significant gas leaks in the underground pipes the previous year, 2018. This was a major problem and one, that if it was not resolved safely and swiftly, would prevent the school from opening at the start of the new school year in September. “It was a real shock to learn about the gas leaks and such was the extent of the remedial work required that the school was forced to apply to the Department of Education for emergency funding;” explained Vucic.

Glenn Nicholls, Service Manager, SMS, explains more; ” My first knowledge of this problem was on the 1st August 2018, I looked at it and designed pipe sizes, routes etc and got a quote to the school by 3rd. We started work on the 9th August and the job took 2 men x 12 days to complete. All existing underground pipework was disconnected and left in situ. Then, new surface mounted 89mm, 54mm and 42mm stainless steel pipework totalling 180 meters in length, was installed to pick up existing services. We also had to employ ground workers to dig up 6 meters of driveway for an external section and then make good to a tarmac finish.”

The school secured £40k worth of emergency funding to cover the costs of the unexpected gas problem and the replacement of a leaking calorifier, and both aspects of the programme were completed on time and on budget, much to the relief of the school’s management team. “SMS saved the day. It feels like a real partnership working with their team who are always professional, highly skilled and are always looking to find the best solution for the school, one that not only works but also gives us value for money;” concluded Vucic.

Martyn Neves, Operations Manager at SMS, said; “We are delighted that we have been able to establish and maintain such a longstanding relationship with the team at Herschel Grammar School. We will continue with our maintenance contract for the school and next on the list, in addition to the boilers, is the maintenance 51 fan convector units located across the school, as well as the electric water heater and the water treatment facility.

“With so many schools facing the triple challenge of aging building stock, ever decreasing budgets and a growing demand for greater energy efficiency, companies with the experience and expertise of the SMS team are a vital support for any school’s management team;” said Vucic.


Consort Claudgen have expanded their Electronic 7-day Timer range to include three new low surface temperature fan heaters; two of which are 500W and 750W heaters in the PLSTiE Slimline range and the other a 2kW CN2MLSTiE heater. These heaters comply with NHS Estates Health Guidance Notes with a maximum surface temperature of 43°C, making them perfect for environments with vulnerable people such as children and elderly residents. All heaters offer six heating periods per day, seven days a week and have an optional open/close window detection feature. There is an easy-to-read display, four large control buttons with tactile feedback and an electronic lock to prevent tampering with the controls. The heaters are also enhanced with safety monitoring features and one of the latest low energy consumption EC motors. This allows the heaters to operate quietly, whilst still providing the best possible levels of comfort.

For more details, visit www.consortepl.com or contact Sales at 01646 692172.

Consort Claudgen has launched their latest Heat brochure which includes a host of new heating controls and heaters in their product range. The 48-page brochure features motion-activated and waterproof run-back time controllers, new heater models in the electronic 7-day timer range and advanced wireless controllers which are now compatible with Consort’s RX and SL heaters. As well as several other new products, it showcases heaters with safety monitoring features. All of these are detailed in the brochure along with the established panel and fan heaters, convectors, LST heaters, air curtains, downflows and towel rails.


Download a copy from www.consortepl.com or request at 01646 692172.