Grenfell survivors blast fire crews for telling families to ‘stay put’ in blaze

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GRENFELL Tower survivors have blasted fire crews for telling them to "stay put" as the blaze ripped through the block.

They accused the London Fire Brigade of failures hours after a public inquiry into the tragedy heard a mum and daughter were found dead in each other's arms "trying to squeeze the nightmare away".

 Flora, left, with son Farhad - she lost her husband in the blazePA:Press Association Flora, left, with son Farhad – she lost her husband in the blaze

Survivors highlighted the amount of time it took fire crews to change from a "stay put" policy for residents inside the building to evacuating as an emergency.

The Telegraph today reports that the first emergency call was made at 12.54am on June 14 last year.

According to the newspaper, the fire brigade then took almost two hours to call an evacuation of the building at 2.47am.

Flora Neda, 53, lived on the 23rd floor of the building and claims more people would have survived with an earlier evacuation.

 The raging fire claimed the life of Flora's husband SaberSWNS:South West News Service The raging fire claimed the life of Flora's husband Saber  The fire ripped through the block in a matter of hours and left 72 deadPA:Press Association The fire ripped through the block in a matter of hours and left 72 dead

The mum, who lost her husband Saber in the blaze, said: "The fire brigade knew the fire is very huge and they could not control it. At least if they told us you must save yourselves I am sure most other people would still be alive."

Fellow survivor Farshid Kaficheraghi told the Telegraph he was the second person out of the building but also hit out at the "stay put" policy.

He said: "Anybody who listened died; anybody who didn’t survived."

Earlier the fourth day of tributes to the 72 victims heard Amal Ahmedin, 35, and her daughter, Amaya Tuccu-Ahmedin, 3, were found on the top floor after being engulfed by the flames.

Ms Ahmedin's sister, Winta, broke down as she remembered how excited she was to see her three-year-old niece grow up into an "amazing" person.

Emotional Nick Burton reads a personal statement about the Grenfell tragedy Grenfell Tower survivors reunited with possessions a year on

She told the public inquiry how her sister, who had shared the same bedroom, would hold her tightly as a child when she had bad dreams to squeeze the nightmares away.

She said: "I would hold her (Amaya) tight just like Amal did to me when I was a kid.

"And that's where they were when they were burned alive, holding each other tight trying to squeeze the nightmare away."

LFB told the Telegraph it could not comment on the decisions taken as investigations and the inquiry continued.

Dave Sibert, the Fire Brigades Union’s fire safety adviser and chairman of a national committee on fire safety standards, told the newspaper that if the "stay put" advice was not in place during the incident, some of the 60-plus people saved may have been injured or worse if they were fleeing the building.

Today, as emotional tributes continue, two families of five and a 12-year-old girl are to be commemorated at the public inquiry.

 Dozens died in a fire which tore through a West London tower block in minutesReuters Dozens died in a fire which tore through a West London tower block in minutes

It will be the fifth day of tributes to the 72 dead, which are being held before chairman Sir Martin Moore-Bick begins hearing evidence at the probe.

Due to be remembered are the El-Wahabi family, killed as they awaited rescue from their home on the 21st floor.

They included father Abdulaziz, 52, mother Faouzia, 41, and children Yasin, 20, Nur Huda, 16, and Mehdi, eight.

Abdulaziz's sister Hana told reporters at the time: "He said he had been told to stay inside, stay in one room together and put towels under the door."

The family, she said, were last seen waving frantically out of their window.

Another young victim of the fire, Jessica Urbano Ramirez, is expected to be honoured by her loved ones during the hearing.

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