Sixty towers across England found to have unsafe cladding

Camden Council leader Georgia GouldSource Alastair Grant  AP

On Friday some 4000 residents were forced to evacuate their homes at the Chalcots Estate towers in Camden, north London, after the fire brigade ruled that their blocks were unsafe.

Camden Council leader Georgia Gould is confronted by one of the hundreds of residents evacuated from Chalcots Estate in London.

The government said on Saturday that the cladding samples that failed fire safety tests came from 34 apartment towers in cities including London, Manchester, Plymouth and Portsmouth.

Three towers were found to have similar rain screen panels on their cladding as Grenfell Tower, but a non-combustible insulation material.

Around 100 residents were sent to spend the night on air beds at a rest centre at Swiss Cottage Library, according to the BBC, with the aim of being allocated to hotels or the homes or families and friends by council workers. "There's no organisation and it's chaos", she said.

Detective Superintendent Fiona McCormack was asked on Friday whether the insulation and aluminium tiles used on Grenfell were acceptable for such buildings.

Around 600 buildings across the country are believed to have similar fire risks, of which at least 20 have been confirmed to have the risky and unauthorised cladding.

There are unsafe blocks also in seven London boroughs - Barnet, Brent, Camden, Hounslow, Islington, Lambeth and Wandsworth.

The government has ordered an immediate examination of the refrigerator model that started the blaze, the Hotpoint model FF175BP refrigerator-freezer.

In Scotland, MSPs announced they will carry out their own investigation into the safety of high-rise blocks.


"We are making good progress in the appointment of a judge, in co-operation with the Lord Chief Justice, and we hope to be able to make an announcement as soon as possible", he said.

Prime Minister Theresa May also said the government won't penalize any fire survivors in the country illegally.

Ministers are reportedly "dropping" plans to ease fire safety standards in new schools following a policy u-turn in the wake of the Grenfell Tower fire.

May said the local authority would be given all the means necessary to make sure people had somewhere to stay.

Volunteers work on a mural on which people will be encouraged to write accounts of their experiences in connection with the Grenfell Tower fire.

Authorities say it may take weeks until the buildings are deemed safe enough for residents to return. "We are not trying to impede any work whatsoever, we just want suitable accommodation".

The Scottish Government has already confirmed that no council of housing association high-rise block north of the border has ACM of the type used in Grenfell Tower.

Cladding is tested on flats after the Grenfell Tower fire.

Georgia Gould added: "We realise that this is hugely distressing for everyone affected and we will be doing all we can, alongside the London Fire Brigade and other authorities, to support our residents at this hard time".

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