A 91-year-old woman died days after breaking her leg in a fall while shooing menace gulls away from bins at her sheltered housing complex.
Margaret Davidson, who had been a resident at the Provost Hogg Court sheltered accommodation complex in Aberdeen, had gone outside to chase away the birds as they tore bags of rubbish apart outside of her window.
But the retired barmaid fell and broke a femur bone as she attempted to scare them off.
Her daughter Vi Alexander, who lives in Lumsden, said the “very independent” pensioner lay undiscovered and in pain for an unknown length of time before she was found and helped up.
The 91-year-old died of pneumonia in hospital five days after the accident, which took place on May 5.
Ms Alexander has now called for better monitoring systems, and has raised concerns over bins being overfilled at the sheltered accommodation complex.
Ms Alexander said: “She had her community alarm on her wrist, and she had her walker, but somehow she fell down and broke the top of her femur.
“I asked her if she pressed her community alarm button, but she said she didn’t, and I suspect she was in a lot of pain and confusion.
“Unfortunately I have no idea how long she had to lay out there until someone found her and came to help.”
Ms Alexander said her mother, who worked at the Torry Bar on Sinclair Road until she retired in her 70s, was “very independent”.
She said her mum, who was affectionately known as Ma to patrons of the Torry Bar, never had carers, and her routine kept her “mind occupied and her body going”, up until the lockdown “when that routine stopped”.
She added: “There’s no camera or sensor out that back door, and if people weren’t allowed to fill up the bins with so much stuff they were overflowing there might not have been this problem with the gulls.”
Alexander Burnett, the Scottish Conservative MSP for Aberdeenshire West, said the incident “exposed flaws” in how older people are looked after.
He said: “This is a tragedy that could have been averted.
“And it raises real concerns about keeping people safe in sheltered housing.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed significant flaws in how we look after the elderly.”
A spokeswoman for Aberdeen City Council said: “We are sorry to hear of the death of one of our residents, and our thoughts are with family and friends at this sad time.
“Aberdeen City Council treats the health and safety of our tenants as a priority and deploys various welfare services within our sheltered complexes to keep our residents safe.
“We continue to encourage tenants to report concerns so we can help resolve any issues as soon as possible.
“Waste and recycling collections have been running as they should and there have been no reports of issues at Provost Hogg Court.”