England

London fire: England councils order urgent housing review

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Media captionLondon fire: How can you make tower blocks safe?

Councils across England are carrying out urgent reviews of high-rise buildings in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower fire.

The Local Government Association said authorities were reviewing fire risk assessments and the construction of buildings.

Staff are also working closely with tenants to review and offer fire safety advice.

Police say at least 30 people died as a result of the west London blaze.

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Lord Porter, LGA chairman, said: "Following the horrific fire at Grenfell Tower, councils with tower blocks in their local area have been working with their local fire service, and undertaking urgent reviews of their high-rise buildings.

"Fire risk assessments and the construction of buildings are being reviewed and double checks are being made to ensure remedial work recommended under previous assessments have been carried out."

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Image caption Urgent checks are being carried out on high-rise blocks following the west London fire

Extra fire safety checks were immediately organised across local authorities, including Camden, Newham, Croydon and Redbridge.

Cladding 'correct standard'

In Leeds, which has 116 blocks, the council is carrying out a review of fire safety in all blocks as a matter of urgency, but reassuring residents adequate checks are already in place.

In the Midlands, councils in Coventry and Birmingham, which have 38 high-rise blocks, say they have double-checked records and no buildings have cladding like the type used in Grenfell Tower.

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In Wolverhampton, the city council said that of the 36 tower blocks across the city, a number have external cladding.

The authority said it was "confident" the cladding is of a correct standard, but will undergo urgent checks with manufacturers.

Fire crews in Solihull have visited high-rise blocks to reassure residents.

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Image caption Water is sprayed on Grenfell Tower as firefighters continue working at the scene

Senior councillors in Liverpool will hold a meeting with social landlords on Saturday, while the fire service is reviewing its inspection processes for high-rise buildings and prioritising inspections of high-rise premises across Merseyside.

St Katherine's Court in Northampton, which was recently refurbished, was inspected earlier by the fire service.

Management said cladding used is a different type to that used on Grenfell Tower.

Meanwhile, fire services in Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and Humberside have also confirmed they will be visiting high-rise buildings.

And in Cornwall, which has one tower block, a meeting with residents and council and fire officers is planned for next week.

Lord Porter added: "Councils take the safety of residents extremely seriously. We need to know with certainty how this fire started and why it spread so quickly so that councils can start to take any action needed."

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