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Thread: London fire

  1. #1
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    Default London fire

    Utterly shocking. I hope the counter stops at the 12 known so far.
    Congratulations America

  2. #2
    So may your dreams be monumental when your spirit guides the way
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    We share a fate, trapped on a page, by the author of our world's demise

  3. #3
    Theresa May's chief of staff 'sat on' report warning high-rise blocks like Grenfell Tower were vulnerable to fire
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politic...t-10620357.amp



    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/...b0240ef7614627
    Firefighters in their gear at the scene said they could not speak freely but they had been in the fire, rescuing residents. Some had used up four oxygen canisters, known as BA (breathing apparatus), going in and out of the flames. Cuts to the fire service had taken a serious toll on operations, they said.

    Put it this way, you’re meant to work on a fire for a maximum of four hours, we’ve been here for 12. Hopefully we’ll get home at some point before we have to come back tonight.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  4. #4
    Tragic what has happened, some horrifying stories like the baby thrown out of the window to safety. Caught by a member of the public from the ninth or tenth story, but now an orphan as neither parent made it
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  5. #5
    Horrific way to die, and no doubt there will be a great deal of public anger even before the shock passes.


    Quote Originally Posted by Steely Glint View Post
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politic...ng-up-10622601

    Mr Lewis told MPs: "We believe that it is the responsibility of the fire industry, rather than the Government, to market fire sprinkler systems effectively and to encourage their wider installation."

    He said the Tory government had committed to being the first to reduce regulations nationwide, pledging a one in-two out rule.

    He added: "The cost of fitting a fire sprinkler system may affect house building—something we want to encourage—so we must wait to see what impact that regulation has."
    Events like these are rare enough, and the housing problem bad enough, that the vast majority of builders and landlords can, for the most part, get away with cutting corners on fire safety measures. This is precisely the kind of matter in which a modern western government has a natural and active rule to play.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    Horrific way to die, and no doubt there will be a great deal of public anger even before the shock passes.




    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politic...ng-up-10622601



    Events like these are rare enough, and the housing problem bad enough, that the vast majority of builders and landlords can, for the most part, get away with cutting corners on fire safety measures. This is precisely the kind of matter in which a modern western government has a natural and active rule to play.
    Public anger is all nice and well, but it seems like this is a much bigger problem and not just a British one; the materials that were installed in the 'upgrade' of this building are widely used all over the world. How do we know that high rises people work and live in don't turn into death traps in a matter of minutes?
    Congratulations America

  7. #7
    We don't, but perhaps we can mitigate that risk eg. through the use of sprinklers.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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  8. #8
    It was the cladding on the outside of the building that was the problem, not sure sprinklers would have stopped that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  9. #9
    Even when you can't stop a fire, you can do a lot to mitigate the harm. This seems to have been a perfect firestorm of incompetence:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...ay-INSIDE.html

    Survivors have described how the building's fire alarms were not working at all - and sprinklers also failed.

    And it has emerged that the block's residents were told to 'stay put' in their flats in case of the fires, and the only stairwell used in the evacuation may have been blocked.

    Residents have said they were only alerted to the fire by neighbours banging on doors or phone calls from people living in the area who saw the tower was alight.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    It was the cladding on the outside of the building that was the problem, not sure sprinklers would have stopped that.
    A couple of years ago we had a mishap with the sprinkler system in my workplace. Within a matter of minutes we were wading through 5cm of water. That seems to indicate there is a chance of making a difference. I also understand it's less the cladding itself than the way it's installed that causes the facade to burn like we saw.

    Staying put is the way to go, as long as the fire comes from inside the building, and probably originally was the way to go. I don't know if they realized the instructions were no longer the right ones. If I am not mistaken there are 2 other towers in that complex that don't have a renovated exterior, in those towers that fire would most likely not have raged as it did in the renovated one. They have basically a concrete and glass exterior.

    Maybe the main lesson to learn from this is to NOT insulate that type of old building from the outside, despite the fact that it's probably easier and cheaper.

    The blocked stairwell is TOTALLY unforgivable.
    Last edited by Hazir; 06-15-2017 at 12:29 PM.
    Congratulations America

  11. #11
    The residents of the building have been calling the place a death trap for years, but they might as well have talked to the wind for all the attention anyone paid them.
    So may your dreams be monumental when your spirit guides the way
    Within in the flicker of a candle, I will heal your soul's decay
    We share a fate, trapped on a page, by the author of our world's demise

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steely Glint View Post
    The residents of the building have been calling the place a death trap for years, but they might as well have talked to the wind for all the attention anyone paid them.
    Well, obviously poor people... who listens to those anywhere?
    Congratulations America

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    It was the cladding on the outside of the building that was the problem, not sure sprinklers would have stopped that.
    You understand that water doesn't burn right? Wet stuff doesn't burn. If there was a working suppression system the interior of the building would have been saved and the people who died would have survived. That's exactly what happened in Dubai earlier this year.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  14. #14
    Let sleeping tigers lie Khendraja'aro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hazir View Post
    Public anger is all nice and well, but it seems like this is a much bigger problem and not just a British one; the materials that were installed in the 'upgrade' of this building are widely used all over the world. How do we know that high rises people work and live in don't turn into death traps in a matter of minutes?
    Germany's fire code expressly forbids the use of flammable materials for coating highrises for this very reason. High buildings also require special elevators and a specially ventilated stairwell.
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    You understand that water doesn't burn right? Wet stuff doesn't burn. If there was a working suppression system the interior of the building would have been saved and the people who died would have survived. That's exactly what happened in Dubai earlier this year.
    No this is not my area of expertise. As far as I know smoke and fire can still travel once heat is high enough for as long as it can find any fuel to burn and oxygen to breathe. That's why even when water is used fires can be out of control and dangerous.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  16. #16
    water on a fire with (generally) solid fuel deprives the fire of the oxygen it needs to spread. thats why wet stuff (generally) fails to burn, the water acts as a barrier between the fire and the fuel. Heat can of course cause the water to evaporate which is why you think fires would continue to be out of control and dangerous.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  17. #17
    Let sleeping tigers lie Khendraja'aro's Avatar
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    Erm, no, Ominous. Water deprives fire of heat. Oxygen deprivation is only incidental.
    When the stars threw down their spears
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  18. #18
    Generally is the problem. A lot of solutions to prevent the fire spreading were based upon what generally works. This was an horrific case of not being generally.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Generally is the problem. A lot of solutions to prevent the fire spreading were based upon what generally works.
    That does not appear to be the case at all from what has come out so far. ie, a fire alarm taking 30 minutes to sound off is not how "generally" works.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  20. #20
    Really? Reports I've read have said that the victims were at first advised to remain in their rooms as the compartmentalisation built into the building for fire safety meant that the fire should not (generally) spread. Tragically that advice was horrificly misguided in this specific rather than general instance.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Tragically that advice was horrificly misguided in this specific rather than general instance.
    advised by preposted signs like this:
    Spoiler:

    which refer to a fire that can be contained inside a unit. People's misunderstanding of where the fire was coming from and how it was spreading is what caused the problem. By the time people were in danger the poor building management doomed them. There is no "its generally ok" in that.

    According to this the fire took ~20 minutes to spread to more than a dozen floors, and according to eye witnesses the fire alarms hadn't yet tripped. Thats not "generally" ok

    Last edited by Ominous Gamer; 06-15-2017 at 07:46 PM.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  22. #22
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    In the Frankfurter Algemeine Zeitung they quote Harald Bruckmuller of Concenta, a producer of this type of cladding The cladding with inflammable core is double the price of the used product. But it gets interesting when he starts talking about usage.

    "For buildings not higher than 7 floors they can be used without any problem. But to use this type of cladding on a high rise would be unthinkable in Austria, not only it's forbidden, it would be too dangerous and (criminally) negligent".
    Congratulations America

  23. #23
    Senior Member Flixy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Generally is the problem. A lot of solutions to prevent the fire spreading were based upon what generally works. This was an horrific case of not being generally.
    Eh, there's some general things that seem to have gone wrong here. No general fire alarm apparently is a major problem for obvious reasons - When the fire was still small people could have gotten out still. Only one stairwell available, then you'd expect that one you be ventilated and on overpressure so there's no smoke there. Assuming the fire started small (generally true) and fire department was apparently quick at the scene, it's very surprising it spread so fast. And when it did, people should have been instructed to leave but apparently three was no alarm or PA system in place as the police asked bystanders to send that message to people they knew inside

    And what's worst is that a lot of those shortcomings were noticed but just ignored. Expired fire extinguishers, stuff stored in hallways, these were all reported but just ignored. Even if the building was properly designed and built (and renovated) which is doubted now, it only works if it's maintained properly. Where I lived previously we had a yearly inspection of all communal areas, fire extinguishers and alarms, is that not common in the UK?

    By the way sprinklers, not sure if it would have been good here, they don't stop outside fires and they don't stop gas fires, and false alarms turn very damaging and expensive. I don't know enough about fire prevention to know if they would have been appropriate in this building.
    Keep on keepin' the beat alive!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flixy View Post
    Eh, there's some general things that seem to have gone wrong here. No general fire alarm apparently is a major problem for obvious reasons - When the fire was still small people could have gotten out still. Only one stairwell available, then you'd expect that one you be ventilated and on overpressure so there's no smoke there. Assuming the fire started small (generally true) and fire department was apparently quick at the scene, it's very surprising it spread so fast. And when it did, people should have been instructed to leave but apparently three was no alarm or PA system in place as the police asked bystanders to send that message to people they knew inside

    And what's worst is that a lot of those shortcomings were noticed but just ignored. Expired fire extinguishers, stuff stored in hallways, these were all reported but just ignored. Even if the building was properly designed and built (and renovated) which is doubted now, it only works if it's maintained properly. Where I lived previously we had a yearly inspection of all communal areas, fire extinguishers and alarms, is that not common in the UK?

    By the way sprinklers, not sure if it would have been good here, they don't stop outside fires and they don't stop gas fires, and false alarms turn very damaging and expensive. I don't know enough about fire prevention to know if they would have been appropriate in this building.
    I'm not certain sprinklers could have done much against the burning of the facade either, but maybe they could have contained the fire before it spread out of the unit. A single non pressurized stairwell in a highrise seems like a very bad idea to me as well.
    Congratulations America

  25. #25
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    This just in: They used Polyethylen which is to be had for 22 pounds per square meter. Fire resistant material would have cost 24 pounds per square meter.

    It would have made a total difference of a mere 5,000 pounds.
    When the stars threw down their spears
    And watered heaven with their tears:
    Did he smile his work to see?
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  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Hazir View Post
    Utterly shocking. I hope the counter stops at the 12 known so far.
    Counter up to 30 but with over 70 still unaccounted for it could yet rise much higher still
    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post
    ℬeing upset is understandable, but be upset at yourself for poor planning, not at the world by acting like a spoiled bitch during an interview.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandBlade View Post
    Counter up to 30 but with over 70 still unaccounted for it could yet rise much higher still
    So, the value of a soul in that building was about 50 euros.
    Congratulations America

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Flixy View Post
    By the way sprinklers, not sure if it would have been good here, they don't stop outside fires and they don't stop gas fires,
    Quote Originally Posted by Hazir View Post
    I'm not certain sprinklers could have done much against the burning of the facade either,


    The fire was still burning 36+ hours after it started. It spread from a kitchen to the exterior back to the interior. Sprinklers would have stopped it from spreading back inside the building.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Hazir View Post
    So, the value of a soul in that building was about 50 euros.
    Don't forget, they were probably a drain on public finances.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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  30. #30
    Senior Member Flixy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ominous Gamer View Post


    The fire was still burning 36+ hours after it started. It spread from a kitchen to the exterior back to the interior. Sprinklers would have stopped it from spreading back inside the building.
    You're assuming sprinklers keep working after hours of fire. Hell, if they go off on too many floors they probably lose proper water pressure very quickly.

    Anyway it's not that I am sure it wouldn't have helped (in almost any way they would have at least slowed the fire a little) but sprinklers also aren't a magical bullet they appear to be now and come with significant downsides too. For me the biggest issue is apparently poor material choice, poor maintenance of fire and safety related practices, and possibly bad design, combined with self regulation which leads to cutting corners. And of course the multiple warnings they had well before the disaster. Sprinklers or no sprinklers i don't care so much as long as the building is safe which it clearly wasn't. Fire safety isn't a one time investment it requires continuous upkeep. And given the appearances off cost cutting at the expense of safety i doubt a sprinkler system would have been properly maintained and other safety things wouldn't be neglected still.
    Keep on keepin' the beat alive!

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