A TEENAGER who falsely set off a fire alarm at a school on bonfire night has been fined.
Jamie Espie was showing off to friends when he activated the fire alarm in Broxburn Academy.
The false alarm caused a fire crew to attend the school on what is the busiest night of the year for the fire service.
And Sheriff Alan Millar left the 17-year-old in no doubt what the consequences of his actions could have meant to those suffering a real emergency that night.
Livingston Sheriff Court heard Espie, who was 16 at the time, and two other youths were spotted running towards the front door of the school by the janitor at around 7.30pm. He asked them to leave but as he was returning to his office he heard the fire alarm.
In the area where the youths had been he found a fire panel with the glass smashed. The alarm automatically alerts the fire service who attended the school and confirmed it had been a false alarm.
CCTV footage from the school confirmed that Espie has activated the alarm.
Espie, whose address was given as Carledubs Avenue, Uphall, pled guilty.
His solicitor, Andy Aitken, said his client told him he had not smashed the glass panel.
“It may have been one of the others he was with, however, he accepts he was the one who set the fire alarm off and accepts responsibility for the consequences it had for the fire service,” Mr Aitken said. “He was a young man showing off to his friends. He set off the alarm with no regard to the date when the fire service were very busy.”
Fining Espie £140 for the offence Sheriff Alan Millar said: “I think what you have to reflect on with this is suppose on the night of November 5 there had been a real fire or a real emergency elsewhere and the fire brigade were late getting there because they were attending Broxburn Academy.
“It does not take many minutes for fire to take hold and that could have been a consequence of your actions which is why this is a serious matter. I hope you understand that fact.”