A fire at the Lacrosse building in Melbourne’s Docklands in 2014 is strikingly similar to London blaze as investigations point to cladding used in buildings.
Flammable cladding blamed for the rapid spread of the fatal Grenfell Tower blaze was pinpointed as contributing to another fire in a high-rise apartment building in Melbourne, which narrowly avoided loss of life.
A fire at the Lacrosse building in Melbourne’s Docklands on 25 November 2014 is strikingly similar to London’s Grenfell Tower fire, which has left at least 12 people dead and more than 70 injured.
The rapid spread of the Lacrosse building fire, which was sparked by a cigarette on an eighth-floor balcony and raced up 13 floors to the roof of the 21-storey building in 11 minutes, was blamed on flammable aluminium composite cladding that lined the exterior concrete walls.
The same type of cladding was installed on the Grenfell Tower in 2016, as part of a £10m renovation.
Aluminium composite panels have a polyethylene or plastic core and an aluminium coating. It is a cheap building material widely used worldwide to clad high-rise apartment buildings.