Ambulances sent to London fire scene

Frederick Owens
June 14, 2017

The London Fire Brigade said that 200 firefighters and 40 firetrucks are on the scene of a massive conflagration that encompasses almost every floor, from the second through the twenty-seventh.

Several people have been reported dead and at least 50 taken to hospital, as fire engulfs London tower block.

200 firefighters and 40 fire engines are now at the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in north Kensington.

The cause of the fire, which broke out just after 0000 GMT, is not known at this stage, the Fire Brigade said.

Ash Sha, 30, who witnessed the fire and has an aunt in the building who managed to escape from the second floor, said the local council had renovated the tower.

Smoke and flames rise from a building on fire in London, Wednesday, June 14, 2017.

Officials have confirmed a number of fatalities as well. London Mayor Sadiq Khan said on Twitter that a major incident had been declared.

London Ambulance said more than 20 crews had been sent to the area, including specialists for hazardous environments.

Firefighters react at the scene of the Grenfell Tower fire. It's gone. It's just a matter of time before this building collapses.

"Across London we have many, many tower blocks and what we can't have is a situation where people's safety is put at risk because of bad advice being given or if it is the case, as has been alleged, of tower blocks not being properly serviced or maintained".

"Our initial priority is to assess the level and nature of injuries and ensure those in the most need are treated first and taken to hospital".

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Ayyube Asif told CNN he saw the fire from his cousin's house miles away and immediately ran toward the blaze.

Hadil Alamily said in the past hour she saw "someone jump on fire from the top floor".

Witnesses could hear screaming from the upper floors as the flames rose and one desperate resident could be seen waving a white cloth.

Grenfell Tower is in Latimer Road, west London.

"It's very distressing, not just for those of us watching as lay people, but also very distressing for the emergency services".

Metropolitan Police said "an evacuation process is under way", the BBC reported.

The London Fire Brigade tweeted that the fire involved the second to the top floor of the 27-story building.

The public housing apartment block was built in 1974.

Authorities said they did not know the cause of the fire, and that it would be investigated.

"It has been very clear for some time to the residents of Grenfell Tower that those responsible for ensuring the smooth running of Lancaster West Estate are failing in their duty of care and willfully allowing our residential amenity to decline in unacceptable ways", a GAG blog post reads. Residents of Grenfell Tower were being evacuated from the building as late as 4:00 British Summer Time.

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