January 21, 2018

60 high-rise buildings fail safety tests so far after London fire

29 June 2017, 09:04 | Rex Hubbard

The Latest: 650 London homes evacuated on fire issues

The Latest: Evacuated London residents express anger, fear

Tests earlier this week on the Chalcots Estate, a cluster of high-rise apartment buildings, had revealed four of the estate's towers used exterior cladding and insulation similar to the materials used in Grenfell.

The evacuation comes as local authorities around Britain scramble to assess the safety of apartment buildings following the June 14 inferno that engulfed Grenfell Tower in west London, killing an estimated 79 people.

On Friday, some 4,000 residents were forced to evacuate their homes in north London after the fire brigade ruled their blocks were unsafe.

And Simon Taylor, who has fitted cladding to 25 local authority tower blocks, told the Telegraph that the cost for each building would be around £1m.

There are concerns over cladding used on buildings after reports that the materials used on Grenfell Tower, in north Kensington, London, caused the fire to get out of control.

Almost two weeks after a major fire destroyed a 24-storey block of flats in west London, the repercussions of what happened to the Grenfell Tower continue to be felt across the United Kingdom, and much farther afield.

The cladding on Grenfell tower has been the central point of the investigation into the blaze.

"Camden Council has decided it will immediately begin preparing to remove these external cladding panels from the five tower blocks on the Chalcots Estate".

Police have warned that the number of victims could rise still, with detective Fiona McCormack on Friday saying a full forensic search of Grenfell Tower could take until the end of the year. But we should not be in the position where buildings have such cladding on them. She added that "our first priority is people's safety".

Over 40 killed in airstrike on ISIS-run jail eastern Syria
The US-led coalition said last week that it had killed ISIS's top cleric Turki Binali in a 31 May strike on Mayadeen . In the meantime, a local media activist told ARA News that ISIS is using civilians as human shields in Deir ez-Zor.

The estimated bill for the United Kingdom government to replace flammable cladding on housing blocks could top £600m and possibly go even higher if residents have to be evacuated during building work.

Authorities in London evacuated roughly 650 apartments in a high-rise complex overnight, citing fears that the complex bore numerous safety issues that Grenfell Tower did.

The type of siding or "cladding" used on the Grenfell Tower in London - and suspected of feeding the massive fire that killed dozens of residents - is not allowed on the exterior of tall buildings across most of the U.S.

Village 135 development, Wythenshawe - Wythenshawe Community Housing Group said 78 panels were being removed from a small area of the overall development.

He said: "There has been no clarification about whether the building I stay in is safe enough".

Greater Manchester Fire Service said its fire risk audit of the site concluded the building "is safe for all residents".

Communities Secretary Sajid Javid urged local authorities and housing associations to continue to submit samples "as a matter of urgency" amid a nationwide safety operation. The final death toll is expected to be much higher.

A blog post by James Pauley, president and CEO of the NFPA, said that outdated fire safety codes and standards and the acceptance of reduced safety requirements to save money were blamed as other factors in the national decline of fire safety standards.

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