British PM offers support to evacuated residents

Lucy Bush
June 24, 2017

A high rise building block in Belfast may have the same outside combustible cladding as London's Grenfell Tower.

Camden Council leader Georgia Gould said on Friday that the Taplow building would be "temporarily decanted" to allow "urgent fire safety works" to take place.

The fire at Grenfell Tower fire killed at least 79 people.

Those living in the Taplow block on the Chalcots estate are to be rehoused in temporary accommodation following a joint inspection of the block by the London Fire Brigade and Camden Council.

Eleven buildings have now been identified as having combustible cladding such as that used on the Grenfell Tower.

A Hotpoint FF175BP model was found to have been the fridge-freezer at the centre of the tragedy and followed witness reports from June 14 that one resident claimed his appliance was responsible.

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The decision comes after Scotland Yard revealed that insulation samples collected from the 24-storey building failed preliminary tests.

The number of people to have died, including those classed as missing presumed dead, remains at 79.

The fire spread quickly through the tower block, leading to concerns that cladding on the building did not meet fire safety rules.

Hotpoint said Friday that "words can not express our sorrow at this bad tragedy" and added it was working with authorities to examine the appliance.

The US-based company said that consumers who bought Hotpoint fridge-freezer models FF175BP or FF175BG should contact the company "so that we can register their details and contact them with further information".

British Prime Minister Theresa May has tweeted that her thoughts are with hundreds of public housing residents who are being evacuated because of fire safety concerns.

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Firefighters and emergency workers who battled the inferno have been leaving messages and tributes to the victims at a makeshift memorial near the charred apartment block.

Another firefighter wrote "Our hearts go out to everyone touched by this tragedy".

"We will identify and investigate any criminal offense and, of course, given the deaths of so many people we are considering manslaughter, as well as criminal offenses and breaches of legislation and regulations", McCormack added.

Edward Strange said: "We've had two fires here since the cladding was put on and both fires didn't spread so I don't see what the problem is". Early tests of materials used on the building's exterior returned alarming results, she said.

One shirt bearing the London Ambulance Service logo said: "We refuse to forget you".

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Other reports by Info About Network

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