Election watch: The next government needs to get an urgent grip on fire safety

Jane Duncan

Former RIBA president Jane Duncan looks at how the Grenfell tragedy is addressed in the manifestos

Descriptions of the fire at Grenfell Tower can sometimes risk making it seem like a singular occurrence, given the scale and horror of the loss of life, and longer-term impacts. But it was an event that followed a litany of poor government and institutional decisions which led to 72 people dying horrifically in a tower block in the early hours of June 14, 2017.

And they are decisions that could certainly be made again.

The world watched the images on television and will remember the speed with which the fire tore up through the cladding and entered the building – filling it with toxic smoke. It was the cladding that was widely blamed for the ferocity and intensity of the damage caused in those hours.

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