TAYSIDE Fire & Rescue and Angus Council are urging property owners and tenants to check their property for large icicles and heavy hanging snow.

Where they are forming on gutters and roofs as a result of the severe weather conditions they can present a risk to householders and anyone walking outside buildings.

Homeowners and commercial property owners are being reminded that it is their legal responsibility to make their property safe, and this includes the removal of any potentially dangerous snow and icicles.

If possible, and where it is safe to do so, property owners should do the work themselves. Alternatively they should hire a contractor in a bid to avoid potentially serious accidents.

Members of the public are asked to be aware of this potential danger and where necessary keep clear from the external perimeters of buildings to avoid the risk of injury from falling icicles, sliding snow or weather damaged gutters.

Alternative routes and paths should be used to avoid building perimeters if this is possible. If it is not possible to remove icicles and hanging snow from above doorways, then an alterative entrance should be used if one is available.

In an emergency situation any member of the public with a safety concern should get in touch with Tayside Fire and Rescue on 01382 835804 or call 999.

Angus Council's building standards team and Tayside Fire & Rescue are doing what they can to alert domestic and commercial property owners of potential problems and will continue to provide emergency help where they can, but responsibility ultimately lies with the property owner.

Tenants should contact their landlord to report any problems and property owners may wish to seek advice from their insurer on how to tackle the problem.

Members of the public are asked to take a practical, proactive and common sense approach to this issue as Tayside Fire & Rescue and council resources are already stretched responding to the extreme weather conditions and preparing for the continuing cold spell.