Wednesday, 28 June 2017

London Tower Fire: UK Police says death toll now 80, residents say the figure is far more

The death toll from the Grenfell Tower fire in London has now risen to 80, UK Police says.

Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent Fiona McCormack admitted that even with this new number, the true total of those killed in the devastating fire may not be known until the end of the year.

Out of the 129 apartments, residents in 23 flats between the 11th floor and the 23rd are believed to have all died.

With a criminal investigation underway to establish the charges including manslaughter, authorities say they searched 23 flats and have found no one alive.

Oluwaseun Talabi was able to escape on the 14th floor of the burning tower with his family but many weren’t fortunate and died on their way out.

“We are many months from being able to provide a number which we believe accurately represents the total loss of life inside Grenfell Tower,” McCormack said. “Only after we have completed a search and recovery operation, which will take until the end of the year. What I can say is that we believe that around 80 people are either dead or sadly missing and I must presume that they are dead.”

What we know is that it would be impossible for anyone to produce a list to show exactly who was at Grenfell Tower that night, that includes the people who were living there or who were visiting,” McCormack added.

The detective told news men they were now preparing families and loved ones that they may never recover the remains of their loved ones and due to the intense heat of the fire, some people may never be identified.

“We are drawing on expert advice from a range of international specialists such as anthropologists and odontologists – the work to identify people will be ongoing for many months to come.”

Representatives of  Grenfell residents released their own list which was much higher than the number the Metropolitan Police gave out. They feel confused on why the police will not release more numbers.

This is the largest investigation the Met has conducted asides a counter terrorism investigation.

Many who survived are now displaced as efforts to find new properties for those displaced by the disaster are still underway.

120 tower blocks of the 120 tower blocks (council-owned high rises) tested have also failed flammability tests – that’s 100% with combustible cladding found on university accommodation blocks sparking nationwide fear and panic.

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