Several Injured in Fire at Apartment Tower Near Canary Wharf

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Several people have been injured after a fire broke out at an apartment block in London’s Poplar district, which neighbors the Canary Wharf financial hub. The blaze has since been brought under control.

The exterior of the New Providence Wharf building, developed by Ballymore Properties, is partially clad with a similar material to that used on the Grenfell Tower in west London, where a 2017 fire quickly spread and killed 72 people. Fire crews and ambulances attended and several people were treated at the scene, a spokesman for the London Fire Brigade said by email. Two men were taken to hospital, the BBC reported.

“The safety of our residents is paramount and we are working closely with the London Fire Brigade,” a spokesman for Ballymore said by email, confirming the fire has been extinguished. “Our response team are on-site to support residents and assist with alternative accommodation where necessary.”

The U.K. has been grappling with how to pay for the replacement of dangerous cladding from hundreds of blocks since the Grenfell tragedy, leaving residents stranded in unsafe homes that have become impossible to sell. The government has pledged 5 billion pounds ($7 billion) to replace combustible cladding on buildings, but only those over 18 meters tall. The funding doesn’t cover the cost of additional fire safety measures required in the interim.

The government last week voted down an amendment to a new fire safety bill that would have prevented building owners from passing on the cost of repair works to apartment buyers, who typically own long leases on their properties.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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