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Friday, 16 June 2017

Councils undertake urgent reviews of high-rise sites after Grenfell Tower fire

Written by Ryan Hooper

Councils across the country have ordered urgent reviews of their social housing stock in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster.

The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents more than 370 councils in England and Wales, said authorities have been "on the front foot" to carry out reviews on their high-rise buildings since the tragedy unfolded on Wednesday.

Extra fire safety checks were immediately organised across local authorities, including Camden, Newham, Croydon and Redbridge, in the wake of the blaze in north Kensington that claimed at least 30 lives.

Officials said robust measures were already in place to ensure tall blocks were safe, but that they would be revisited to see if any action needed to be taken.

Lord Porter, LGA chairman, said: "Following the horrific fire at Grenfell Tower, councils with tower blocks in their local area have been working with their local fire service, and undertaking urgent reviews of their high-rise buildings.

"Fire risk assessments and the construction of buildings are being reviewed and double checks are being made to ensure remedial work recommended under previous assessments have been carried out."

He said councils are also working closely with tenants to review and offer fire safety advice.

He added: "Councils take the safety of residents extremely seriously. We need to know with certainty how this fire started and why it spread so quickly so that councils can start to take any action needed.

"The LGA continues to work closely with councils, the Government and fire chiefs to help coordinate national efforts in response to this dreadful disaster.

"The thoughts of the whole local government family remain with the victims and families affected by this devastating fire, the local community and the emergency services."

Theresa May has already ordered a public inquiry into the disaster.

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2017, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) David Mirzoeff / PA Wire.