One person has died after an enormous fire ripped through an apartment located on the first floor of a complex in Holland Park Gardens, in west London. Approximately 80 firefighters are said to have tackled the blaze, with 12 fire engines being called to the scene at around 9:45 on the night of Tuesday, February 6.
According to The London Evening Standard, residents from at least eight nearby buildings were forced to leave their homes to ensure their safety. The cause of the west London apartment fire, which took “several hours” to put out, is not yet known. The city’s Hazardous Area Response Team, as well as London’s Air Ambulance trauma team and an incident response officer, were also on scene.
The identity of the deceased has not yet been released. A spokesperson for the London Ambulance Service did, however, confirm that “extensive resuscitation efforts” were made to revive the man, but to no avail.
Onlookers were, reveals The Daily Mail, quick to take to Twitter to share what they had witnessed of the west London fire, with many posting videos of the aftermath. One individual told reporters that he had seen fire and smoke tearing through the first floor before making its way to the second, which was quick to ignite.
— The Straits Times (@STcom) February 7, 2018
Tuesday’s fire in west London is eerily close to another recent blaze, which the city’s residents still continue to mourn. Less than a mile away used to lie Grenfell Tower, a 24-story public housing block in North Kensington which was the subject of an inferno that took place on June 17, 2017. One of the most vicious fires to have ever occurred in the nation, it caused the death of 71 people and injured more than 70 others; thankfully, 223 individuals managed to escape. The blaze burned for over 60 hours before being extinguished, with more than 250 firefighters and at least 70 fire engines being called to the scene.
Inquiries regarding the inferno are still ongoing, with the first hearing taking place in September of last year. Evidential hearings began the month after, with inquests into all 70 deaths having since been adjourned at Westminster Coroner’s Court. The blaze reportedly started by accident in a fourth-floor fridge freezer, with the fire’s rapid growth believed to have been sped up by the exterior cladding of the building.