Grenfell inquiry resumes after break

Grenfell inquiry resumes after break

THE INQUIRY into the fire in June 2017 resumed, with both the government and London Fire Brigade (LFB) ‘called on to lay out their actions’ since the fire.

Evening Standard reported on the resumption of the inquiry, with the government and LFB asked to ‘lay out their actions’ since the fire to help inquiry chairman Sir Martin Moore-Bick ‘decide whether to recommend urgent fire safety measures’. This comes after calls for Sir Martin to ‘consider urgent recommendations to ensure the safety of communities living in similar tower blocks’.

Danny Friedman, representing a group of bereaved residents and survivors, has also called for senior LFB witnesses to be asked ‘what knowledge they had of any deficiencies regarding policy, training and equipment’. In turn, he also called for these witnesses to be questioned ‘on what changes have already been put in place’ within LFB, and urged the inquiry to ‘consider moving back’ to the Millennium Gloucester hotel from Holborn Bars.

When the inquiry last resumed, hearings focused ‘on the factual narrative of the events’, including ‘existing fire safety and prevention measures’, ‘where and how the fire started’, the ‘development of the fire and smoke’, and how they ‘spread from its original seat to other parts of the building’. Two extra panel members were added during the second stage, Prime Minister Theresa May changing her mind after ‘originally opposing’ appointing people with ‘the skills to examine the cultural and community reasons behind the fire’.

She also noted it was ‘on course’ to receive 400,000 documents, with 183,000 of 330,000 received thus far reviewed by the inquiry team. A ‘significant volume’ of documentation ‘will be disclosed’ during the first phase, and earlier this year, chair Sir Martin Moore-Bick appointed assessors to look at housing, local government and technical matters.

Two days of hearings took place dealing with ‘case management issues’ including proposed timetables, ‘matters concerning witnesses and the disclosure of evidence’. Sir Martin was also looking to produce an initial report explaining the ‘immediate cause and spread’ of the fire, as well as an ‘assessment of the evacuation process’.

Most recently, the inquiry began looking at the ‘factual narrative’ of the events, with expert witnesses describing the various safety failures in the tower and a ‘culture of non compliance’.