Key Points to Creating Justice for Victims of Grenfell Tower Fire Slaughter:
[Posted by Lara Keller 22/6/17]
1. Tower blocks cannot be rapidly engulfed by fire, without huge lack of fire cavity breaks. Alu-PE panels secondary issue to this.
2. Huge number missing hidden fire cavity breaks, means criminal gross negligence manslaughter by number of individuals.
3. This requires a major focused aggressive fast moving police investigation. Evidence secured and people interviewed and arrests made.
4. Outcome of investigation probably be used as major embarrassment to UK Conservative Government and RBKC Council, this is a risk to senior police officers careers.
5. Justice for Grenfell victims therefore requires brave influential champions, supported by demonstrations of constructive public anger.
- “If regulations were followed, the Grenfell Tower inferno should have been impossible.” 14/6/17 Geoff Wilkinson, building inspector, UK Daily Telegraph. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/06/14/regulations-followed-grenfell-tower-inferno-should-have-impossible/ to get accessible copy see https://partnershipblog.wordpress.com/2017/06/19/if-regulations-were-followed-the-grenfell-tower-inferno-should-have-been-impossible/
Highlighted Key Paragraph = “Something similar happened in Irvine [Irvine, North Ayrshire, Scotland] in 1999, after which new regulations were put out which limited the types of cladding which could be used. In particular, they mandated barriers at various points in the cavity, blocking off the ‘chimney’ on all sides. And in 2014 Grenfell’s landlords decided to install exactly this kind of cladding in order to ‘improve its appearance’ when viewed from the luxury flats nearby. The Guardian has reported that some panels used in modern cladding are only fire-proofed on the surface, behind which is up to 30cm of highly flammable polyurethane. If true, that is a major non-conformance with regulations. But even if not, were the proper firebreaks put in place behind the panels?“
- UK Building Research Establishment (BRE) presentation on “The Fire Performance of Building Envelopes”, June 2016 https://www.ifsecglobal.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/The-Fire-Performance-of-Building-Envelopes-by-Steven-Howard-BRE-Global.pdf Highlighted Key Slide =
External Walls over 18m in Height. A summary of [guidance from Approved Document B, 2007] Volume 2 Section 12:
* External surfaces comply with Diagram 40 ‘Euroclasses’. Applicable to all Buildings. Additional recommendations for buildings with a storey over 18m: All insulation and filler materials should be A2-s3,d2 or better. All cavity barriers and fire stopping guidance needs to be followed.
* Test the complete system to BS 8414.
Note = Also gives introduction to fire spread in cladding systems, and useful list of previous incidents.
- “Manslaughter charges under consideration after Grenfell Tower disaster.” 18/6/17 See (is accessible): http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/06/18/prosecutors-considering-manslaughter-charges-grenfell-tower/ Extract= “He [Sir Keir Starmer, Labour Shadow Brexit Minister]said they would be looking at whether anyone could be charged with manslaughter following a litany of failings that led to the disaster – in which at least at least 58 people are now feared to have been killed.”
- “Grenfell renovation proposed temporary removal of fire protections.” 16/6/17 https://www.insidehousing.co.uk/fire-safeguards-in-grenfell-were-temporarily-removed-during-refurbishment/7020464.article to get accessible copy see: https://partnershipblog.wordpress.com/2017/06/19/grenfell-renovation-proposed-temporary-removal-of-fire-protections/ Key Extract = “To install the new pipes, the ‘fire stopping’ – systems used to seal openings and joints to prevent the spread of fire – would have had to be partially removed, under the ‘preferred option’ listed in a report from 2012 by engineers Max Fordham. The document said this option was adopted.” [Key Question=Were the fire cavity breaks replaced around the 6 x vertical service risers in Grenfell Tower, creating internal chimneys for inter-flat fire spread?]
- “Gross negligence manslaughter” 14/8/13 https://app.croneri.co.uk/feature-articles/gross-negligence-manslaughter Useful guide to offenses of gross negligence manslaughter compared to corporate manslaughter.
Key passages = “The police investigate suspected cases of manslaughter. Prosecution decisions are made by the Crown Prosecution Service in England and Wales, the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Scotland and the Director of Public Prosecutions in Northern Ireland. The Health and Safety Executive is involved through a joint approach to work-related deaths between all the relevant regulatory authorities in line with the principles of the Work-related Deaths Protocol.”
“The maximum penalty for those convicted of gross negligence manslaughter is life imprisonment. The factors which may be involved in deciding the length of any prison term include whether:
* multiple deaths were involved,
* the case involved a prolonged and dangerous course of conduct,
* there was an awareness of a significant risk of death or really serious injury,
* warnings had been ignored,
* the defendant was pursuing a course of conduct for financial gain.” [Note = to see “duty of care” requirement between construction professionals and tenants, see Defective Premises Act 1972 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1972/35/pdfs/ukpga_19720035_en.pdf ]