London Mayor Sadiq Khan said questions will need to be answered over the safety of tower blocks after several people were killed on Wednesday when a fire engulfed a 24-storey building.
Some residents said they had been advised they should stay in their flats in the event of a fire, while the block’s residents association had previously warned it was worried about the risk of a serious fire.
“These questions are really important questions that need to be answered,” Khan told BBC Radio.
“Across London we have many, many tower blocks and what we can’t have is a situation where people’s safety is put at risk because of bad advice being given or if it is the case, as has been alleged, of tower blocks not being properly serviced or maintained.”
Fire engulfed a 24-storey block of flats in central London on Wednesday, killing some people, injuring at least 50 more and trapping some residents asleep inside the towering inferno.
Flames licked up the sides of the block in the north Kensington area as 200 firefighters, backed up by 40 fire engines, fought the blaze for hours.
Plumes of black and grey smoke billowed high into the air over the British capital hours after the blaze broke out at the Grenfell Tower where several hundred people live.
Residents rushed to escape through smoke-filled corridors in the housing block after being woken up by the smell of burning. Some said no fire alarm sounded.
Witnesses said they saw trapped residents desperately shouting for help from windows on upper floors as flames enveloped the building.
London Fire Brigade said the fire engulfed all floors from the second to the top of the block which contained 130 apartments.
“In my 29 years of being a fire fighter, I have never ever seen anything of this scale,” London Fire Brigade Commissioner Dany Cotton told reporters
“I am very sad to confirm that there have been a number of fatalities, I cannot confirm the number at this time due to the size and complexity of this building.”
London Ambulance Service said more than 50 people had been taken to hospital.
A witness told Reuters she feared not all the residents had escaped the fire.
Some were evacuated in their pyjamas.
“I looked through the spy hole and I could see smoke everywhere and the neighbours are all there. There’s a fireman shouting ‘get down the stairs’,” one of the block’s residents, Michael Paramasivan, told BBC radio. “It was an inferno.”
“As we went past the fourth floor it was completely thick black smoke. As we’ve gone outside I’m looking up at the block and it was just going up. It was like pyrotechnics. It was just unbelievable how quick it was burning.”
The cause of the fire, which broke out just before 1 a.m. (0000 GMT), was not known, the Fire Brigade said.
Residents said repairs had been made recently to the exterior of the block.
Ash Sha, 30, who witnessed the fire and has an aunt in the building who managed to escape from the second floor, said the local council had renovated the tower. (NAN)
All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from LEADERSHIP Nigeria Newspapers. Contact: [email protected]
SPONSORED17 hours ago
How To Last For 25 Minutes Longer In Bed, Permanently End Pain And Embarrassment Of Weak Erection
NEWS22 hours ago
PDP Set To Offer Presidency For Sale, BCO Alleges
FEATURED18 hours ago
Ado: Community Under Siege As Robbers Go On Rampage
NEWS10 hours ago
Osun Poll: Massive Turnout Of Voters As Oyetola , Adeleke Hails The Exercise
NEWS18 hours ago
Dankwambo As PDP Presidential Flag Bearer
NEWS22 hours ago
PMB Condoles With President Magufuli, Tanzanians On Ferry Disaster
NEWS9 hours ago
Osun Poll: Aregbesola, Omisore Disagree On Conduct Of Exercise
ENTERTAINMENT21 hours ago
Ramsey Noah Congratulates Genevieve Nnaji On ‘Lion Heart’ Success