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The horrific fire that engulfed the 24-story Grenfell Tower, on Tuesday night of the 13th of June, has resulted in the deaths of 30 people and counting. There are also 30 people currently injured in the hospital, and at least 15 in critical condition. The fire reportedly started from the explosion of a faulty refrigerator. London has gotten the brunt of a string unfortunate events lately, from the Ariana Grande concert attack to the bridge incident. Our hearts go out to the survivors, victims, and the loved ones of such victims in this time of need, as well as London as a whole.

The Fire

The fire started reportedly at the apartment complex on Latimer Road, at around 12:30 AM, Tuesday.

It raged throughout the night and was finally put out early Wednesday morning. There were several videos posted on YouTube of the towering inferno. These videos show escaped residents and civilians screaming in terror, as they shout to people still trapped in the tower to receive their locations. These people gave the information on those still trapped to firefighters and police on the scene. Trapped residents called loved ones and police to get information on how to secure themselves safely inside their homes until they were able to be rescued. Some tenants had no choice but to jump from their balconies and throw their children from their windows, these tenants lived near ground levels, to escape the fire. The fire burned for a gruesome four hours before being fully put out.

The History of Grenfell Towers

The history of the Grenfell Towers is what has come under the media and public's scrutiny as of late.

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There are reports of tenant complaints. Many residents complained about their ignored concerns during their news interviews. The entire building does not have a single alarm. They complained about there only being one entrance to the building, having no fire escapes, no fire safety plan in tact, having absolutely zero sprinklers installed, and much more. A lot of these complaints were posted on the Grenfell Action Group's blog.

“All our warnings fell on deaf ears,” the group wrote on their website, as early as January 2013. They even predicted that it would take a tragedy for people to wake up and listen to their very reasonable concerns and requests.

ALL OUR WARNINGS FELL ON DEAF EARS and we predicted that a catastrophe like this was inevitable and just a matter of time. Below is a list of links to previous blogs we posted on this site trying to warn the Royal Borough of Kensington And Chelsea, who own this property, and the Kensington and Chelsea Tenant Management Organization who supposedly manage all social housing in RBKC on the Council’s behalf.

This quote was taken directly from their website, which can be accessed through the first link below.

Residents were issuing concerns as early as 2013, so why didn't anyone respond to these concerns?

The tower had received new cladding under recent refurbishment in 2016, residents suggest it was to cutback on money, since the cladding was cheaper, but more flammable. Similar cladding had been used by German construction companies, but was banned. For those wondering how the fire spread so rapidly in a short amount of time, the cladding used may have had aluminum sheets with a highly flammable polyethylene core. The spread of the fire could also be due the installation of fire barriers placed in between the cladding.

The Aftermath Has Launched Investigation & Protest

The controversial construction techniques and reason for the fire has launched an investigation into the apartment complex. It was said to be a long and complex forensic investigation ahead for Grenfell. The residents who were involved with the fire and have yet to receive clear details on the whereabouts of missing loved ones, and are very frustrated and sick with grief. They want clarity on why they haven't gotten news on their loved ones and the real reason behind the fire. Some outlets have speculated that the government had issued a DA-Notice ( Defense Advisory Notice), which is an official request to news outlets and editors not to publish or broadcast items on specified subjects for reasons of national security. An official confirmed to The Guardian that such notice had not been issued related to the Grenfell fire. Even so, a protest was constructed and began, consisting mostly of Grenfell residents, outside of Kensington and Chelsea Hall earlier today. Since then, these protesters have marched to Notting Hill Methodist church, where they held a minute of silence in remembrance of those lost and split into two groups. The smaller group has been standing on Latimer Road. Recently, with the amount of Grenfell residents involved are unknown, a protest in central London has reached the BBC broadcast station. where they continued down Regent Street. These protests will likely resume until the missing victims have been found and the investigation has started.

Once again, our hearts, thoughts, and prayers go out to London. We hope everyone involved that are still missing are found. We hope those injured in the hospital recover. As of late, some of Grenfell's survivors have been rehoused outside of the area, hopefully everyone will find some place to call home. We send our condolences to those that have lost a loved one.