Family seek 12-year-old girl missing after Grenfell Tower fire

Cheryl Sanders
June 15, 2017

London police said six people were confirmed dead, but expected the toll to rise, while ambulance services said they had taken 50 people to five area hospitals.

Firefighters were battling a massive fire in a London apartment high-rise early Wednesday morning.

Policing and Fire Minister Nick Hurd said Wednesday the government wanted to reassure people living in other apartment buildings. Police commander Stuart Cundy said Wednesday he did not anticipate further survivors.

The Grenfell Action Group, a community organization, says it has repeatedly warned about the risk of fire at the building since 2013.

Samira Lamrani, a witness, said a woman dropped a baby from a window on the ninth or 10th floor to people on the sidewalk. At least 200 firefighters went to tackle the fire that broke out around 1 a.m. local time and continued to burn for several hours.

The local council of Kensington and Chelsea, which owns the block, said it was focusing on supporting the rescue and relief operation.

The £8.7 million (9.9 million euro, $11 million) refurbishment of the block was completed past year and included new windows and heating system.

Other witnesses spoke of children, including a baby being thrown to safety, from windows high up.

Khan, the London mayor, said there needed to be answers after some residents said they had been advised they should stay in their flats in the event of a fire.

"It is our conviction that a serious fire in a tower block or similar high density residential property is the most likely reason that those who wield power at the KCTMO will be found out and brought to justice!" a residents organization, the Grenfell Action Group, wrote in a blog post past year.

"There's people, like, throwing their kids out: 'Just save my children, just save my children!'", she said.

Lamrani said: "People were starting to appear at the windows, frantically banging and screaming".

The cause of the fire is not yet known. "This is because Grenfell was designed according to rigorous fire safety standards", KCTMO said in a newsletter to residents in July 2014.

Barwell told the Commons in October that part B of the building regulations, which cover fire safety, would be reviewed as part of a process following a 2009 fire at a tower block.

"If the same concerns were had in a wealthy part of Kensington and Chelsea they would have got resolved, but here they didn't get resolved", said Collins.

Mike Penning, a member of British Parliament who is a former firefighter, said "cladding was clearly spreading the fire".

Seventy-four people have been treated in hospital, according to the London Ambulance Service.

The blaze at Lakanal House in Camberwell, south-east London, killed six people, with an inquest finding it spread because botched renovations compromised fire stopping between the flats.

But residents of the building, which was constructed in 1974 and is used as public housing, had long warned of potential fire hazards even though it was completely renovated just a year ago.

Jody Martin, a witness, told the BBC: "I watched one person falling out, I watched another woman holding her baby out the window.hearing screams".

Along with her message, the picture post shared details of how those wishing to help can assist those affected by the fire. "A neighbor's smoke alarm went off and another neighbor phoned and told me to get out", Daffarn said.

Firefighters are still working to bring flames at Grenfell Tower under control.

"Rydon completed a refurbishment of the building in the summer of 2016, meeting all required health and safety standards".

The family of a 12-year-old girl missing following the Grenfell Tower blaze have issued a plea for her to be found. "This was just done to tart it up and match the nearby building".

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