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Grenfell Tower Fire Victim Count Increases, Police Investigate Possible Crimes

Grenfell Tower Fire Victim Count Increases, Police Investigate Possible Crimes

"Family liaison officers are supporting families, and that includes those people we know to be dead; some of those who are crucially ill and sadly those people who we have been told were in Grenfell Tower that night who we have been unable to trace". "On Saturday, I went in myself and went to the top floor".

"The conditions due to the fire damage verge on indescribable, which is why this will be such a lengthy operation taking weeks to complete", Police Commander Stuart Cundy said.

Experts believe the exterior cladding, which contained insulation, helped spread the flames quickly along the outside of the tower in the Wednesday morning blaze that has killed at least 58 people.

The police chief, who went inside the charred shell of the high-rise tower over the weekend, told reporters: "I've investigated major crime for most of my service and I've seen some awful things but I don't think anything prepared me for what I was going to see when I was in there".

The devastating fire erupted in the early hours of June 14 trapping several sleeping residents at the 24-storey Grenfell tower.

The fire ripped through the high-rise early last Wednesday.

Cundy said efforts to trace missing people had led him to believe that the number could be higher.

He said it had been "incredibly emotional working in there ..."




Cundy explained that one of the reasons identification has been so hard is because dental records are needed from victims who hailed from different countries around the world.

"The response of the emergency services, NHS and the community has been heroic", she said in a statement.

Hands and Treasury chief Philip Hammond said in separate TV appearances that the cladding used on Grenfell seems to be prohibited by British regulations.

Cundy said that authorities were continuing to investigate whether any crimes had been committed in the fire.

The number of people believed to have died from a fire that set ablaze Grenfell Tower in west London last week has risen to 79 and could increase, United Kingdom police say.

In addition, British health authorities will provide long-term bereavement counselling for those who lost loved ones in the tragedy.

Prime Minister Theresa May has been criticised for her muted response to the fire and had to be rushed away from a meeting with residents on Friday under heavy police guard as protesters shouted "Shame on you".

She says she will receive daily reports from the stricken neighborhood, where hundreds of people have been displaced.


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