Five high-rise housing blocks evacuated in London over fire hazard

Five residential tower blocks in London’s Swiss Cottage have been evacuated, leaving 800 households without accommodation, after firefighters said they could not guarantee their safety. They were placed in temporary housing, including hotels and the local library. Thorough inspections of such estates were ordered in the wake of the disastrous fire which enveloped the 24-floor Grenfell Tower disaster, leaving 79 people dead or presumed dead earlier this month.

Communities Secretary Sajid Javid said Saturday that the evacuation was forced not by the cladding alone – which had magnified the fire at Grenfell Tower – but “multiple other fire safety failures”, including problems with insulation on gas pipes and missing fire doors.

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