Crimson Fire Risk Services Ltd News Updates
Large Fire at West London Tower Block!
Wednesday 14th June 2017
Waking up to horrible news this morning. Number of people have been killed - and several remain trapped - in a large fire on a west London estate being battled by more than 200 firefighters and 40 fire engines.
It is reported 50 people have been taken to five hospitals in the capital for treatment as hundreds of residents in the 24-storey Grenfell Tower are evacuated from their flats in the burning building.
Witnesses described hearing screams, watching people throw themselves out of the high-rise block and a woman holding a baby out of a window.
Bystanders speak of seeing people shouting and waving from the windows for help, and seeing people shining torches from within as the inferno erupted in the dead of night.
Social media showed the building engulfed in fire, with huge flames stretching over a number of floors.
London fire service said the fire had spread throughout the entire building, now covered in plumes of smoke with visible pockets of fire within the charred structure.
Small explosions could be heard as the blaze shattered windows in the block.
London Fire service commissioner Dany Cotton said: "I am very sad to confirm that there have been a number of fatalities.
"I cannot confirm the number at this time due to the size and severity of the fire."
She described it as an "unprecedented incident", something she had not seen in her 29 years of service.
Cause of the blaze is not known yet, but is being investigated, she added.
Reporting from the scene, Sky News producer Dan Cairns said residents have been told that if they get calls for help from people inside, to tell them they need to try and "self-evacuate".
He added: "They are being told to put a cloth over their mouths and try to get out by themselves."
The actor and writer Tim Downie, who lives around 600 metres from the scene, said he feared the block could collapse.
He said: "It's horrendous. The whole building is engulfed in flames. It's gone. It's just a matter of time before this building collapses.
"It's the most terrifying thing I've ever seen. I just hope they have got everyone out.
"The first I knew was the noise of sirens, helicopters and shouting. I saw it engulfed in flames.
"People have been bringing water, clothes, anything they've got to help, out to the cordon.
"I have seen people coming out in their bedclothes - it's just very distressing."
London Ambulance said it had sent a "number of resources" to the scene, including its Hazardous Area Response Team, after the fire was first reported at around 1.15am.
London mayor Sadiq Khan tweeted: "Major incident declared at Grenfell Tower in Kensington" and urged people to follow London Fire Brigade on Twitter.
Joanna O'Connor, a local resident, told Sky News: "At about 2am I was woken up by screaming, sirens and helicopters. We came outside and were confronted with the building that was completely engulfed in flames.
"It was a real shock and there were hundreds of people lining the streets, we could still hear screaming from the building and people were milling around in shock, crying.
"One of our neighbours, her sister, husband and children were in the building, it was their neighbours' flat that caught fire. So it's very close to us, we've got neighbours whose families are in that building."
Celeste Thomas lives across the road from the tower and said residents and families were "trying to find each other" following the evacuation.
She said: "Police have moved everyone back out of direct sight but I can hear cracking and debris falling."
The tower block - which was refurbished internally and externally last year - is situated on the Lancaster West Estate, between Latimer Road Underground station and Westfield's White City shopping centre.
Police spokesman said: "At this stage we are aware of two people being treated at the scene for smoke inhalation."
Transport for London said there was no service between Hammersmith and Edgware Road on the Circle and Hammersmith and City lines, while the police said the A40 was closed in both directions, owing to the fire.
Nick Paget-Brown, leader of Kensington and Chelsea Council, said several hundred people will have been in the tower when the fire broke out.