Fri | Dec 15, 2017

Death toll from London fire continues to rise

Published:Sunday | June 18, 2017 | 12:20 AM
The scorched facade of the Grenfell Tower in London.

London police yesterday said 58 persons who were in Grenfell Tower are still missing and assumed to be dead.

Police Commander Stuart Cundy said this number, which was based on reports from the public, may rise.

He said it will take weeks or longer to recover and identify all the dead in the public housing block that was devastated by a fire early last Wednesday.

Cundy noted that there may have been people in the tower that police are not aware of, which would add to the death toll.

He said the search for remains had been paused because of safety concerns, but has resumed. Emergency workers have reached the top of the 24-storey tower.

Cundy promised an exhausting investigation into the tragedy.

In the meantime, British Prime Minister Theresa May met with some survivors of the London high-rise fire at her Downing Street office.

The meeting came a day after May was heckled during a visit to the west London neighbourhood where Wednesday's inferno took place.

There has been growing public anger at the government's initial response to the disaster's aftermath and reports that external panelling put up during a recent renovation contributed to the flames' rapid spread.

May is chairing a government task force on the fire.