Glasgow & West Scotland

Review after woman set fire to herself in Glasgow police van

Police vehicles Image copyright George Clerk/Getty
Image caption A review of how people are monitored in police vehicles has been recommended

A police watchdog has recommended a review after a woman set fire to herself in a van.

The 25-year-old struggled violently with officers which made it difficult for them to search her thoroughly.

She used a lighter she was carrying to set fire to her clothing and suffered severe burns.

The Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (Pirc) recommended a review of how people are monitored inside police vehicles.

'Discretionary' procedure

The incident happened as the woman was being transported to London Road police station in Glasgow on Saturday 27 April.

Pirc found the woman had been placed in handcuffs behind her back following a report of a disturbance.

The lighter she was carrying was not discovered and the escorting officer chose not to sit in the rear-facing observation seats.

This would have allowed him to continually monitor the woman throughout the journey.

The officer did not see her setting fire to herself with the lighter until the flames had taken substantial hold.

Standard operating procedures at present allow some discretion for officers on the monitoring of people being transported in police vehicles.

A Pirc report recommended the discretionary element to the procedures carried out inside police vehicles should be reviewed.

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