TUC 18: Fire safety failed at Grenfell Tower long before fire broke out

Every aspect of fire safety in Grenfell Tower failed long before 14 June 2017, the leader of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) told delegates at the annual TUC conference in Manchester today (10 Sept). 

Speaking in support of the FBUs motion on the fire, where 72 people lost their lives, Matt Wrack said: “We’ve learned that the refurbishment work carried out a few years before the fire was a complete disaster from a fire safety perspective. 

“Almost every fire safety measure in that building had already failed before the fire. Compartmentation failed, because the new windows were full of flammable materials.

“The doors did not give even half an hour’s protection and many do not seem to have been self-closing. The lifts could not be overridden by firefighters. The ventilation system did not disperse smoke as it was supposed to do.

“The single stairwell was barely a metre wide – and less with the handrail. There was no wet riser main despite the building being close to 70 metres high – only a dry riser. But above all else, Grenfell Tower was clad from top to bottom with materials that had the same sort of flammability as petrol.” 

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