A massive fire raced through a high-rise apartment building in west London early Wednesday, leaving an unknown number of people dead and dozens more hospitalized. "I'm standing here in everything I've got", one survivor said. "There's people, like, throwing their kids out: 'Just save my children, just save my children!'", she said. One of his daughters was hospitalized.
"Over 200 firefighters and officers are attending this incident, with 40 fire engines and a range of other specialist vehicles, including 14 fire rescue units at the scene".
But, in a report following the 2009 tragedy, the chief fire and rescue adviser, Sir Ken Knight, said the spread of that fire had been unusual.
In a blog on November 20, the activist group predicted that only "a catastrophic event" leading to "serious loss of life" would bring the outside scrutiny needed to make conditions safe for residents.
"This is an unprecedented incident, " Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton told reporters on the scene.
She added: "In my 29 years of being a firefighter, I have never, ever seen anything of this scale".
"She was about to throw her baby and if somebody could catch her baby", the eye-witness explained.
'Members of the public who are concerned about friends and relatives should contact the police Casualty Bureau on 0800 096 1233.
"Half of the building was ablaze by the time we got out".
'The search and rescue operation is still going on and I wish to commend the fearless actions of firefighters and other emergency responders who arrived at the scene within minutes and have been at the scene throughout the night.
"We saw a lot of people jumping out that basically didn't make it".
He said the blaze had advanced quickly, and that the alarms did not appear to have been triggered. After that (fire), I'm not so sure that was an accident.
"It went like that", he said, snapping his fingers.
A huge fire has engulfed a 24-story apartment block in West London.
"We can't have a situation where people's safety is put at risk because of bad advice being given or if it is the case, as has been alleged, of tower blocks not being properly serviced or maintained", he said. Many said there were only minutes to flee before the building became an inferno.
Neighbors streamed into the center with food. Volunteers handed out bottled water.
Hurd has spoken to London Fire Brigade Assistant Commissioner Steve Apter to assure him that the government will offer assistance.
The cause of the fire, which broke out just after 0000 GMT, is not known at this stage, the Fire Brigade said. The BBC reported that "several hundred" residents could have been at home when the fire started just after midnight.
Built in the 1970s, the housing block was recently upgraded at a cost of 10 million pounds ($12.8 million), with work finishing in May 2016, according to the local council. The web page detailing the refurbishment was unavailable for a time on Wednesday.
Bosses are reminding residents that fires of this type are extremely rare and that most blazes do not spread further than one or two rooms.
The management company had no immediate comment.
Cllr Roger Ramsey, leader of Havering Council.
The blaze has been largely contained, but the building is still smoldering.
"The way these buildings work isn't for everyone to escape".