London – Almost two years after the Grenfell Tower fire, London’s Metropolitan police has conducted 13 interviews under caution. Separately, 100 tower residents are starting legal action in the Pennsylvania, US.
The Metropolitan Police has not said how many individuals have been interviewed. But the Met said it has received 7100 statements from a range of connected parties including families and the emergency services.
But, criminal charges may not be brought until 2021, when the second phase of the public enquiry is scheduled to finish.
The cause of the fire, the use of cladding and will be investigated in the public inquiry’s second phase.
In a separate move, over 100 Grenfell residents are suing Arconic, which made the aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding, Celotex, which supplied the insulation and Whirlpool which makes refrigerators.
Pennsylvania is the venue for the US lawsuit. It is where Arconic and Celotex are based. The case comes within the two-year limit for such actions in the US. If the case goes to trial it will be heard by a jury and the damages could be substantial.
The court case appeared on BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme, BBC2 10 am, 10 June 2019. The show read prepared statements from the defendant companies. Arconic said: that it continues ‘to support the public inquiry and the investigations.’ Celotex told the programme that it was ‘considering its position’, that it is ‘ committed to providing all the relevant information.’
The company added that it ‘reaffirms our deepest sympathies to everyone affected by the fire.’
Whirlpool told the BBC that two separate investigations found no evidence of any fault with the refrigerator/freezer in Flat 16. A spokesman confirmed that it complied with safety requirements. The spokesman said the UK Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy and Whirlpool tested the appliances.