At least six dead and 50 injured in massive London high-rise blaze

Shortly before 1am this morning, London Fire Brigade were called to reports of a large fire engulfing Grenfell Tower in Ladbroke Grove, West London.

Ex-Croydon Central MP and new Downing Street chief of staff Gavin Barwell is being criticised over a delayed fire safety review after the devastating blaze at Grenfell Tower.

- London's mayor and police warn the death toll will rise.

The ambulance service said it had sent more than 20 ambulance crews to the scene. The damage to the building has raised concerns it may collapse.

A general view of the Grenfell Tower apartment building fire in North Kensington, London, Britain, 14 June 2017.

"There's lots of people local to us who might have things they can spare but don't have the means to get to west London".

Eyewitnesses said they saw lights - thought to be mobile phones or torches - flashing at the top of the block of flats, and trapped residents coming to their windows - some holding children.

They said official advice in the event of a fire had been to stay inside.

"Kensington and Chelsea Council has confirmed that an investigation into the cause of the fire will be undertaken". They say 30 people have been taken to hospitals but it's not clear if people are still trapped. "I'm anxious if a fire happens, who is going to help?"

To escape from the tower block, some residents even use bedsheets just to save their lives.

Samira Lamrani, a witness, said one woman dropped a baby from a window on the ninth or 10th floor to people on the sidewalk.

Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton called it an "unprecedented incident" unlike anything she had seen in her 29-year career as a firefighter.

London's Metropolitan Police said a number of people were being treated for a range of injuries, but did not provide more specifics.

Falling debris has caused a number of flats in the area to be evacuated.

- The fire is under control, but the the building is still smoldering.

Michael Paramasivan said he was watching TV in the building as his girlfriend and daughter slept when he smelled burning plastic.

"If we had stayed in that flat, we would've perished".

"I can't believe that no one went inside to help them", he said.

"All of this will greatly enhance the energy efficiency of the building", the company said in its strategic report. My gut instinct told me just to get the girls out.

"The more I looked up, floor upon floor".

He said he saw people waving flashlights from the top levels of the building and saw rescuers "doing an incredible job" trying to get people out. Residents said it appeared to start in an apartment on a lower floor and spread upward quickly.

"The whole landing was thick with smoke".

"I grabbed my little girl and ran down the stairs", he said.

Refurbishment of the housing block had been completed past year and the Fire Brigades Union said something had gone badly wrong with fire prevention procedures at the building.

Ubah Yusuf said she and her neighbors, who lived close to Grenfell, would ask their building manager about their own tower block.

By early morning, most of the block was a smouldering hulk as firefighters sprayed water onto floors within reach of appliances on the ground.

  • Leroy Wright


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