The independent London newspaper

Questions remain about firefighting capabilities in the aftermath of Grenfell

04 July, 2019

London fire brigade commissioner Dany Cotton

• JOHN Gulliver’s piece concerning London’s fire commissioner Dany Cotton sidesteps an uncomfortable truth: if another “Grenfell” happened to one of the several hundred similarly-clad buildings tomorrow, the same result would ensue, (The fire chief and aftermath of Grenfell, June 27).

With their hoses, the fire brigade can reach 12 storeys. If bulky ALP aerial ladder platforms can actually get in position, they get a little higher – that’s all.

The solution has to be to use the Royal Air Force with their Hercules aircraft and their excellent pilots to deliver up to 3,250 gallons in five seconds, probably in many short and controllable bursts. But they don’t have the modular airborne firefighting system (MAFFS) 2 unit or the organisation to deliver.

With the help of your pages, I warned of this on July 26 of last year, (Water bombs are available, let’s have them now). Twelve months on, and we are no further forward.

If a fire similar to the Grenfell Tower disaster were to happen again, I cannot begin to estimate the amount of pure raw anger that will be unleashed on the fire brigade and the Mayor of London. What is Sadiq Khan going to say to the cameras camped outside his offices?

Pandora Road, NW6


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