Residents voice anger over London tower blaze

The London Fire Brigade said a structural engineer and rescue crews had assessed the stability of the building and believed it was not in danger of collapsing.

Police commander Stuart Cundy said Wednesday he did not anticipate further survivors.

He told the BBC: "I watched one person falling out, I watched another woman holding her baby out the window... hearing screams, I was yelling everyone to get down and they were saying "We can't leave our apartments, the smoke is too bad on the corridors".

"It was horrendous. People up at their windows, screaming and the thing went up, it felt like seconds, it was just going up and up and up", a resident who identified himself as Mikey, told the British Broadcasting Corporation.

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.

"It's the most terrifying thing I've ever seen". She left with all six of them.

Mr Fitzpatrick, who was a firefighter for 20 years, said: "We've been pressing for fire sprinkler systems in buildings where we think it's appropriate - certainly over a height level and in places where there is vulnerability, care homes and in schools - and Government has been resisting that for some time".

The building had recently undergone an 8.7 million pound ($11.08 million) exterior refurbishment, which included new external cladding and windows. Relatives said two sisters, Mirna, Fatima and Zainnb, along with two other family members had been in the building and had not been heard from.

"We've complained to council", said Edward Daffarn, 55, who said nothing had been done to improve safety.

Assistant Fire Commissioner Dan Daly said, "This is a large and very serious incident and we have deployed numerous resources and specialist appliances".

"They couldn't see it spreading", he said.

"There are questions about the stay put policy and people's understanding of the policy", he said.

Nana Akuffo, 46, a chef who lives in the neighborhood, said the community was used to fending for itself.

"There was an old couple coming down [the stairs], so I helped direct them towards the fire exit". "A neighbor's smoke alarm went off and another neighbor phoned and told me to get out", he said.

"I am deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life at Grenfell Tower".

The London Fire Brigade received the first reports of the fire at 12:54 a.m. and the first engines arrived within six minutes, she said.

The Action Group expressed concern about the testing and maintenance of firefighting equipment and blocked emergency access to the site.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said many questions now need to be answered about tower blocks around the city.

Damian Collins, former head of the Grenfell Tower Residents' Association, said residents had complained to the local council over the handling of a major refurbishment of the building completed past year.

"But we were just looking up".

- The Catholic bishops of Westminster offered their prayers and local parishes opened their doors to offer aid and supplies to those affected by a massive fire at an apartment complex in west London on Wednesday.

The Grenfell Action Group has spoken out about their repeated requests for improved safety in the building, writing on their blog that their "warnings fell on deaf ears".

  • Arturo Norris