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Grenfell Tower Inquiry: Phase 1 Report

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:20 pm on 21st January 2020.

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Photo of Bob Blackman Bob Blackman Conservative, Harrow East 5:20 pm, 21st January 2020

I will not go into who was at fault and when. We need to look at what we should do now. We can all look back at the history of various different events; that fire was in 2009, which is quite a long time ago, and subsequent inquiries may have taken place.

I have two points. First, it was a mistake for the Government not to require new schools and new developments to have sprinkler systems fitted. We should re-examine that, because sprinkler systems control fires and prevent them from spreading, giving people time to escape by dialling down the extent of the fire.

Secondly, and this is of clear importance, we need to get it right. We have to examine the regulations, when they come, and the legislation that follows in great detail. We need to make sure the regulations are fit for purpose and will stand the test of time, because we are building more and more high-rise buildings and will place more and more people at potential risk unless we get them absolutely right.

We must learn the lessons from this terrible tragedy and make sure that it cannot happen again. We must make sure that our brave firefighters and the other emergency services are properly co-ordinated, as the report recommends, and we must make sure that the lessons are learned so that other people do not suffer what the victims of the Grenfell fire suffered on that terrible night in June 2017.