Also in the news / New scanner for Malakoff, new fire safety rules concern, former doctor’s hut, Twisted Blisters win award

An example of the new scanner's capabilities. Photos: Malakoff

MARINE engineering firm Malakoff has invested in a new Leica RTC360 3D laser scanner which the company says will revolutionise its surveying capability.

The high precision laser can scan large areas with an accuracy of less than one mm at distances of up to 130 metres.

This means that it allows for highly accurate 3D models to be created for a large variety of objects, such as buildings, vehicles, vessels, and many other structures.


A company spokesperson said: “The surveys will mainly be used to assess a vessel’s hull form and other dimensional information more accurately. This information will then be used to calculate a vessel’s hydrodynamic and stability assessment.

“The use of the scanner will lead to easier design of vessel modifications as well as reducing the vessels time out of the water, as the scanner is far faster than traditional measuring techniques.”

HIGHLANDS and Islands Conservative MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston has warned that most people are still not aware of strict new fire safety regulation coming into force next month.

Jamie Halcro Johnston is in line to become a regional list MSP for the Conservatives after Holyrood man Douglas Ross became MP for Moray.
Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston

As of 1 February, every home in Scotland must have interlinked fire alarms, meaning when one alarm goes off, they all go off. Smoke alarms must be fitted in the living room, the kitchen and in every hallway or landing.

Halcro Johnston said the way the new policy has been introduced was extremely disappointing.

“While I am sure we all recognise the need for improved fire safety, I know from across the region that the regulations have caused real concern for people,” he said.

“As the cabinet secretary [Shona Robison] herself recognised, a substantial number of people are still unaware of the changes coming in on 1 February.


“With ministers unable to give any idea of uptake of the new systems, or able to provide full clarity of the impact of non-compliance on home insurance policies, moving forward with the February deadline for the law to come into effect seems nothing short of irresponsible.”

The doctor’s hut in Sandness. Photo © Google 2021

A REMOTE former doctor’s consulting room is set to be passed into community ownership soon following a successful fundraising effort which also attracted a £1,500 grant from the Inspiring Scotland’s Rural Communities Ideas into Action fund.

The Sandness Dr’s Hut, next to the public hall, had been used for many years as the doctor’s consulting room, but fell out of use in 2018.

Sandness Community Development Group was keen to give the hut a new lease of life, and once renovated it will be used by the group to stimulate local social and economic growth.

Four of the Twisted Blisters (left to right): Wendy and John Borrill, Ann Thomson and Kevin Jones.

A SHETLAND-based walking group has won a national step count challenge for the second time, registering over 3.6 million steps.

Twisted Blisters walked throughout the month of November and finished top of the table in a challenge run by national walking charity Paths for All.

The team is made up of Shetland Islands Council employees including Ann Thomson, Morag Maver and Kevin Jones, alongside husband and wife duo John and Wendy Borrill. Jones led the way, achieving one million steps in the four-week period that the walking challenge took place.

Wendy Borrill said: “As well as winning the challenge, one incredible bonus is the physical and mental health improvement you can gain from walking. The endorphins and the sense of achievement from walking never gets old.

“The five of us can all say this has become essential to give ourselves thinking time and space as well as the usual physical benefits that come alongside regular walking.”