London council evacuates residents amid fire safety concerns

Laura Christensen
June 24, 2017

Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE:WHR) is in hot waters as one of its refrigerators caused the deadly Grenfell Tower fire in London.

Some 800 households in five tower blocks on the Chalcots Estate in Camden are being moved to temporary accommodation after firefighters said they could not guarantee the safety of the buildings, council leader Georgia Gould said.

In a notice posted online and shared by Dublin Fire Brigade the manufacturer said they have been made aware of an incident involving a Hotpoint branded appliances, manufactured between March 2006 and July 2009.

Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) in cladding is thought to have contributed to the rapid spread of fire at Grenfell Tower.

"Preliminary tests show the insulation samples collected from Grenfell Tower combusted soon after the test started", she said. So far only nine people have been formally identified and police say the remains of some might never be found, the blaze having been so fierce.

A spokesman for the firm said: "In view of the focus on rainscreen cladding systems and the insulation forming part of them, Celotex believes that the right thing to do is to stop the supply of Celotex RS5000 for rainscreen cladding systems in buildings over 18 metres tall with immediate effect, including in respect of ongoing projects, pending further clarity".

Fears about cladding are not limited to apartment buildings - at least one hotel chain is calling in experts to make certain it meets safety regulations.

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The blaze has provoked anger and heaped pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May, who is fighting for her political survival after her party lost its parliamentary majority in a snap election at a time when Britain is beginning divorce talks with the European Union.

May said Friday that "she will work with and support the emergency services and relevant authorities to safeguard the public". "Where do they think we're all going?"

Heartbreaking messages written on red London Fire Brigade T-shirts offer poignant tributes alongside flowers, toys and candles at the shrine.

The panels were apparently produced in different grades making it different to identify precisely which material may have been used in specific cases, she said.

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

The detective superintendent also said she is anxious that the authorities might not have a true sense of how many people were in the building, in part because people who lived there or knew someone who did might be fearful of having their immigration status reviewed.

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".

Other reports by My Hot News

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