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erienewsnow.com 11 Jan, 2022 23:15 am

The Bronx fire brings back memories of 'screaming faces at the windows' of Grenfell - Erie News Now

The Bronx fire brings back memories of 'screaming faces at the windows' of Grenfell - Erie News Now
Opinion by Yvette Williams

Opinion by Yvette Williams Watching the news footage of the fatal fire that spread through a New York apartment block Sunday, I was transported back in time to another fire that four years ago changed my life forever.Much like in London, the New York blaze started in one apartment, there was not a functioning fire door and smoke then spread through the stairwell to every floor.The New York block contained affordable housing and is located in an area of the Bronx home to a large Muslim and migrant community.Today my heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the 17 men, women and children who died in the New York fire.

On June 14, 2017, I watched as flames engulfed Grenfell Tower -- a 24-story high-rise block of flats in west London -- in the neighborhood I have lived in for more than three decades.When the fire happened at Grenfell Tower, it turned the spotlight on whether the construction, refurbishment and management of the block, as well as existing building regulations, were adequate, and in particular how external cladding -- placed on the building solely for aesthetic purposes -- significantly contributed to the speed and spread of the fire.

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