GRENFELL survivors and campaigners are furious as key report into safety after the fire won’t recommend dangerous cladding be banned from buildings.
Health and safety expert Dame Judith Hackitt, who published her review of building rules this morning, said there was a “broken system” but won’t go as far as to totally ban dangerous materials.
Getty Images The Grenfell Tower blaze left 71 dead last summer after fire ripped through the multi-storey tower bloc
She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that a “wholesale culture change” and a “much stronger regulatory regime” was needed after the tragic fire.
The blaze, which ripped through a 240-storey tower block last June, claimed the lives of 71 people.
And she added: “The guidance already says that you can only use materials of limited combustibility or materials that have been fully tested.
“It is clear from Grenfell and from the other tests that have been done that despite the guidance currently saying that, people were putting other materials up, so I don’t think a ban will work.”
Getty Images The hollowed out shell is all that remains of the building
Her report said that ignorance led a “race to the bottom” in building safety practises which prioritised cost-cutting over safety.
She added: “This is about more than simply issuing a ban on certain materials.”
But campaigners and survivors are concerned that she had made the wrong call.
MP David Lammy said: “This review is a betrayal and a whitewash. It is unthinkable and unacceptable that so many people can die in a disaster like Grenfell and one year on flammable cladding has not been banned.”
Khadijah Mamudu, whose mother and young brother escaped from the west London high-rise, said: “Just for humanity’s sake, she has to ban it.
“It basically sends the message that if you are not of a certain class or if you are not of a certain person then your life means nothing.”
The Royal Institute of British Architects said last month that a ban on flammable cladding was vital, alongside a requirement for sprinklers to be fitted in new builds and a second escape route in high-rise flats.