Kensington flat fire: Action group says ‘our warnings fell on deaf ears’

A local action group have claimed the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower could have been prevented had their concerns about safety been listened to.

Grenfell Action Group have been raising concerns about the 27-storey Grenfell Tower block for the past four years.

In 2013 they claimed that residents had woken to smoke issuing from various electrical appliances in their homes, including the light fixtures.

Read more: First deaths confirmed in Kensington fire blaze

In a series of blog posts they chronicle their concerns about healthy and safety in the block, which is owned by Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and managed on their behalf by Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation.

They have repeatedly claimed the recently refurbished Grenfell Tower, which is home to hundreds of people in 150 units, would not be able to cope with a major incident.

“All our warnings fell on deaf ear and we predicted that a catastrophe like this was inevitable and just a matter of time,” wrote the group in a post on their website.

London Fire Brigade Dany Cotton confirmed the scale of the incident was unprecedented in her 29 year experience as a firefighter. She confirmed a number of fatalities, while London Ambulance Service said over 50 people have been taken to hospital.

Nick Paget-Brown, the leader of the council, refused to be drawn on the cause of the fire, saying his immediate priority was looking after those affected by the blaze.

“It’s clearly an absolutely devastating fire and the emergency services and council support offices have been here for a number of hours trying to establish if they are people still in the building,” said councillor Nick Paget-Brown.

“We’ve set up emergency centres nearby, where people have been evacuated too and we are doing as much as we can for them.”

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