Report: Grenfell refurbishment deficiencies helped the fire spread

A leaked report has revealed damning deficiencies in the tower's safety standards

A leaked report has revealed damning deficiencies in the tower's safety standards

Monday, April 16, 2018

The Grenfell Tower fire would have had "little opportunity" to spread from the flat it started in if the exterior of the tower had not been renovated with combustible material, a leaked report has said.

According to the report, seen by the Evening Standard, the 2014-2016 refurbishment of the west London tower block failed to meet fire safety standards and "deficiencies" in the new facade helped the fire to spread up the building's exterior.

The report, by fire investigation experts BRE Global, was prepared as part of the police investigation into the June 14 fire.

It also identified flaws with the cavity barriers, window frames, "door closers" and flammable insulation and cladding, the paper said.

Grenfell United, the main group for survivors and bereaved families of the fire, said in a statement: "The report in the Evening Standard is shocking but it is not surprising to those of us that lived in the tower. It was clear to us the refurbishment was shoddy and second rate. We raised concerns time and time again. We were not just ignored but bullied to keep quiet."

It continued: "It's an industry that is broken. It's also an industry that has been allowed to get away with this behaviour.

"Six people died in a fire at Lakanal House in 2009 and the Government failed to act and make changes to regulations that would have stopped a fire like that happening again. Tonight we know people are going to sleep in homes with dangerous cladding on them.

"It is vital the police investigation and the public Inquiry uncover everything that led to the fire and that the Government now actually act so that this can never happen again."

The Metropolitan Police said: "Our aim is to carry out an investigation that has integrity and if it uncovers evidence that any individual or organisation is criminally culpable we want that evidence to be tested through the judicial system.

"As such we are disappointed that an interim draft report appears to have been leaked and published. To protect the integrity of the investigation the MPS will not confirm specifics of the ongoing investigation."

The force added that "the heart of our investigation is and will continue to be the families of those who lost their lives; those for whom Grenfell Tower was home and the local community so impacted by events that night".