Grenfell Tower fire: Police confirm 255 residents escaped blaze

Investigators say 350 people lived in the west London block but 14 were not there when the building went up in flames

Lucy Pasha-Robinson
Monday 10 July 2017 14:25 BST
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Previous estimates put the number of people living in the tower block at between 400 and 600
Previous estimates put the number of people living in the tower block at between 400 and 600

More than 250 Grenfell Tower residents survived the devastating fire that killed at least 80 people last month, according to police.

Police said investigations had led them to conclude 350 people lived in the west London tower but 14 were not there when the building went up in flames on 14 June.

Authorities believe 255 people escaped and 80 are still estimated to have died or are missing.

Thirty-two victims have been positively identified, with 55 postmortem examinations having taken place, according to investigating officers speaking at a briefing on Monday.

Detectives said that due to the damage caused by the fire, some bodies may never be identified.

But police said they do not expect the death toll to rise much further.

Detectives also revealed the tower was made up of predominantly one- and two-bedroom flats, which would account for the lower-than-expected occupancy.

Previous estimates put between 400 and 600 people living inside the tower.

It is the first time Scotland Yard has offered a figure for the number of residents in the north Kensington block when the fire broke out.

The figures will be expected to allay fears among the community that hundreds may still be missing.

Residents have expressed continued doubts since the tragedy over the death toll, with Labour MP David Lammy arguing the real number of people killed may have been covered up to prevent riots.

Detectives said the investigation was the biggest the Metropolitan Police has conducted outside of counter-terrorism operations.

Assistant commissioner Martin Hewitt said: “This fire should not have happened and as a result of that fire a large number of people have lost their lives.”

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