London police launch criminal investigation over fatal apartment blaze

Henrietta Brewer
June 16, 2017

Mrs May, already under pressure after a series of terrorist attacks and an election in which her Conservative Party lost its majority, said yesterday that a public inquiry was needed to ensure "this bad tragedy is properly investigated".

The cause of the flames has not yet been determined but the BBC reports that investigations are looking at the cladding on the outside of the building as a potential cause of the fire's quick and decisive spread. In contrast, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was pictured with those who have lost their homes and neighbours in Tuesday night's fire. She returned to Downing Street without making any remarks.

Families are also concerned about two young Italian architects who are missing.

What went wrong at Grenfell Tower?

The fire cast aside May's talks with Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party to secure the votes of its 10 House of Commons lawmakers to back her program after last week's inconclusive election left her short of a working majority in Parliament.

May didn't speak with journalists during the visit.

"A ministerial group will also be convened to review Scottish regulations and to ensure that we are standing ready to take any actions necessary as lessons are learned from this catastrophic fire", she added. Fire Commissioner Danny Cotton said there are still "unknown numbers" of bodies in Grenfell Tower and they are not expecting to find any more survivors.

Emergency accommodation had been provided to 44 households affected by the fire.

(AP Photo/Alastair Grant). The sun creates a rainbow effect as firefighters work at the scene of a deadly blaze at a high rise apartment block in London, Wednesday, June 14, 2017.

London firefighters, many traumatised by the devastation, worked through Thursday to make the building safe so they could continue searching for more victims.

It would be a "miracle" if anyone else were found alive, Cotton said.

Cotton says that firefighters are having trouble with the aftermath. The Philippine embassy in London in its Facebook page confirmed that Filipinos were among those injured in the fire. "I'm really angry about what's happened", said receptionist Samira Jama, 50, who was helping her sister collect belongings from an apartment behind the cordon.

Community centers in London have been overwhelmed by the number of donations flooding in for those left homeless by a high-rise apartment building fire. So much food, clothing, shoes and other items have been coming in that the centres, churches and mosques have had to start turning away new donations. Dozens of others have been hospitalized.

Signs bearing a missing persons' hotline number were tied to a fence.

"Our absolute priority for all of us is identifying and locating those people who are still missing", Cundy said before declining to comment on speculation about the likely final death toll: "It would be wrong for me to get into numbers that I do not believe are accurate".

At least 17 people have died after a fire engulfed a west London block of flats, with more than 30 more people still in hospital.

Newham Council has denied that a tower block in Canning Town is a fire risk after it emerged it had a similar type of cladding to that of Grenfell Tower.

Other reports by iNewsToday