Tags: london | residential | tower | fire

London Residential Tower Fire: 6 Dead, More Expected

Wednesday, 14 June 2017 07:24 AM

A London residential tower fire still burning nine hours later on Wednesday morning has claimed at least six lives and Metropolitan Police said the toll is expected to rise.

According to The Associated Press, Police Commander Stuart Cundy said he can "confirm six fatalities but the figure is likely to rise during what will be a complex recovery operation over a number of days."

Cundy said many others are receiving medical care.

Some 50 people were being treated in hospitals after a massive fire set the 24-story apartment block in west London ablaze overnight.

London's Fire Brigade said a structural engineer and urban search and rescue crews have assessed the stability of the burning tower block in west London and believe it is not in danger of collapsing.

The brigade said "it is safe for our crews to be in there." It added the cause of the massive fire is not known at this stage.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said questions need to be answered about tower blocks around the city following a devastating fire.

Khan had been called to respond after reports that people had been advised in advance to remain in their flats in the event of fire.

Khan said in a statement "there will be a great many questions over the coming days as to the cause of this tragedy and I want to reassure Londoners that we will get all the answers."

The blaze broke out around midnight, and parts of the building were still ablaze some nine hours later on Wednesday morning.

A witness said she saw a member of the public catch a baby that was dropped from the burning tower.

Samira Lamrani told Britain's Press Association she saw a woman try to save the baby by dropping it from a window "on the ninth or 10th floor."

She said "people were starting to appear at the windows, frantically banging and screaming. The windows were slightly ajar, a woman was gesturing that she was about to throw her baby and if somebody could catch her baby."

"Somebody did, a gentleman ran forward and managed to grab the baby."

A blaze broke out in the early hours in the tower block. Some 50 people were injured, and authorities say people have died but it is unclear how many.

Edward Daffarn said he was on the 16th floor and heard a neighbor's smoke alarm go off and another neighbor called and told him to get out. He said there was heavy smoke in the hallway and he couldn't find the stairs.

He said tenants have been complaining for years about issues at the building.

The Grenfell Action Group, a community organization formed to oppose a nearby redevelopment project, has been warning about the risk of fire there since 2013. The group said on its blog that it has raised concerns about testing and maintenance of firefighting equipment and blocked emergency access to the site.

London Ambulance Service said 50 people had been taken to five hospitals.

© Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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A London residential tower fire still burning nine hours later on Wednesday morning has claimed at least six lives and Metropolitan Police said the toll is expected to rise.
london, residential, tower, fire
Wednesday, 14 June 2017 07:24 AM
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