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Grenfell Tower tribute from Freshwater Fire Service

29 June 2017, 09:05 | Lucy Hill

The Latest: 650 London homes evacuated on fire issues

The Latest: Evacuated London residents express anger, fear

The number of high-rise buildings that have failed a combustibility test is now 60 across 25 local authority areas, says the government.


As tests continue to avoid a repeat of the horror which broke out at the Grenfell Tower on June 14, the Association of British Insurers said it had warned of the risks posed by cladding in feedback to a government policy document.

Samples of the cladding are being sent to the Department for Communities and Local Government to be tested independently by fire experts.

"There were also concerns that some fire doors in the building are not working as they should", Daly continued, "meaning that in the event of a fire it could spread to other parts of the building".

Four tower blocks in Camden, north London, are among 60 high-rise buildings where aluminium cladding has been found to have failed fire safety tests.

In it, he details a series of cladding fires around the world that were similar to the Grenfell Tower fire.

Cladding on nine high-rise blocks has been identified as being made from aluminium composite material (ACM), which was used on Grenfell Tower.

He stressed "cladding itself is not dangerous" and that a failure in testing does not necessarily mean a building will be evacuated.

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But a few states and the District of Columbia have relaxed their building codes in recent years and have started to permit the material's use.

A spokesman for Colchester Borough Council said: "We do not have any buildings above 18m in our housing stock and therefore are not undertaking the testing of the kind that has been instigated by the Government for high-rise blocks".

People were told to leave as darkness began to fall, with some taking belongings in suitcases and carrier bags, and some locals saying they only learned of the evacuation as they watched the news.

The LGA went on to explain that a number of councils had already introduced additional fire safety measures in buildings, like 24-hour a day warden patrols when advice from the fire service is clear that this will mitigate against fire risks ahead of the removal of cladding.

On Friday night about 4,000 people were moved out of high-rises in north London fitted with the same cladding as that involved in the Grenfell Tower disaster.

However some tenants refused to leave because they said that Camden Council had not offered them suitable temporary accomodation, which included sleeping on airbeds in Swiss Cottage leisure centre.

"All victims, irrespective of their immigration status, will be able to access the services they need", she said.

Mount Wise Tower Estate - Plymouth Community Homes said it will be removing the combustible elements of cladding from the three 16-storey blocks as soon as possible. The UK government may have to pay £600m to protect other tower blocks from fires. Survivors can not believe that the death toll has not risen.

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