As reported by Reuters, a 24-storey building has been engulfed by fire on Wednesday in central London. Many people were killed, about 50 injured and some residents asleep are still trapped inside the towering inferno.

About 200 firefighters with 40 fire engines have been deployed in the North Kensington area. For hours, firefighters battle to put off the raging fire that has claimed several lives and property.

Scores of people trapped

Residents struggled to escape via the smoke-filled corridors in the housing unit after they were forced to wake up with the smell of burning.

Some of the occupants of the building said there was no sound of fire alarm before the inferno. About 20 ambulances were drafted to the scene. People who witnessed the incident said the trapped residents were desperately screaming for help from the windows on the upper floors as flames covered the entire building. A statement from the London Fire Brigade said 130 flats were affected by the fire which engulfed all floors in the building.

Dany Cotton, London Fire Brigade Commissioner, said he has never witnessed anything of such magnitude in his 29 years of firefighting. It’s saddening to confirm that there are a large number of casualties, but the actual numbers cannot be confirmed at this time, largely because of the complexity and size of the building, he added.

Many fatalities and injuries

According to London Ambulance Serve, about 50 and more injured people have been rushed to the hospital. A witness told Reuters she was afraid some residents who could not escape the fire were still trapped. However, most of the residents have already been evacuated.

Michael Paramasivan told BBC radio that he saw the smoke engulfed the entire building when he peeped through the spy hole and neighbors were still in their respective apartments.

The fourth floor was entirely thick black smoke and the smoke was just going up when looking from the outside. It was just like pyrotechnics. It was incredible how fast it was burning, he said.

Cause of fire outbreak unknown

The main cause of the fire which broke out as early as 1 a. m. G.M.T. is still Unknown. Occupants said major repairs had recently been carried out on the exterior of the building.

Ash Sha, a 30-year-old resident, who witnessed the inferno and has a relative in the block who struggled to escape from an apartment on the second floor, said the tower was renovated by the local council.