A leading fire safety expert warned Government advisors three years ago that a tragedy like the Grenfell Tower inferno would happen unless they changed rules on external cladding.
Arnold Turling, who has advised the All Party Parliamentary Rescue Group, told The Telegraph the fire in West London was “entirely avoidable”, and probably caused by a cheap, flammable insulation inside the new waterproof cladding and a lack of sprinklers.
He said the building could not have burnt down it its original concrete design in place before it was recently modified.
A member of the Association of Specialist Fire Protection, Mr Turling also criticised the policy of advising residents to stay in their flats, saying this was for the benefit of fire fighters, so they can move around more easily, but would have contributed to last night’s deaths.
He said that, while the cladding itself was unlikely to have been very flammable, there was a gap between that and original concrete wall which would have acted as a “wind tunnel”.
“Any burning material falls down the gaps and the fire spreads up very rapidly – it acts as its own chimney,” he said.