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London fire manslaughter charges tipped

24 June 2017

Occupants of one of the five high-rise apartment buildings in Chalcots estate will be moved into temporary accommodations while the work takes place, said Georgia Gould, the leader of Camden Council, in a statement.

English authorities determined that a Whirlpool refrigerator with the brand name Hotpoint ignited the fire in the Grenfell Tower that resulted in the deaths or presumed deaths of at least 79 people.

The renovations on the Chalcots estate is anticipated to take between three and four weeks, Gould said.

"Upon hearing from residents the leadership of the council immediately instructed a joint fire inspection with the London Fire Brigade".

"We have liaised with residents at Durham House and will work to ensure they continue to feel safe and comfortable in their homes".

The government has ordered immediate testing of the Hotpoint fridge freezer that was involved.

By Friday afternoon, the Government said 14 buildings across nine local authority areas in England were found to have flammable cladding.

The speed at which the fire engulfed the 24-storey Grenfell Tower raised questions about the external cladding on the block.

Investigators have now said that cladding and insulation that was attached to the outside of the building had failed subsequent safety tests and cops were now looking at possible manslaughter charges.

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She said: "We are looking at every criminal offence from manslaughter onwards".

Hounslow Council said its cladding contained "rockwool", which is a "non-combustible product, unlike the case of the Grenfell Tower".

McCormack said the police were also considering health and safety breaches against companies, organisations or individuals in relation to the fire, "the worse fire in London since World War II".

McCormack said the police investigation would look at the entire facade of the building, how the building was constructed and the refurbishment work.

McCormack also repeated calls for anyone with information on who might have been in the tower to come forward.

Buildings in London, Manchester and Plymouth are among those where problem cladding has been identified.

"What we are being told at the moment by the Building Research Establishment is that the cladding and insulation failed all safety tests", she told reporters Friday.

"We have been told the speed [the fire] spread at was unexpected, so importantly we will establish why this happened", McCormack said.