Saturday, 17 June 2017
Grenfell Tower dead toll rises to 58 as dogs leads search for bodies
Service dogs have joined the grim search for bodies in Grenfell Tower as police confirmed at least 58 people are missing presumed dead. Speaking to media outside the west London building today, Metropolitan Police commander Stuart Cundy said: 'The fire was truly horrific. For me this is just a human tragedy.'
He said that the force has confirmed 30 people are dead and believe another 28 are missing who they have to 'assume they are dead'. The commander stressed that this information was based only on the number of people they believed were in the tower when it caught fire in the early hours of Wednesday morning and the actual total may be greater. Commander Cundy said police had received more than 6,000 calls and that the search is set to take weeks or 'longer'. London Fire Brigade's canine units were sent into the building yesterday along with the MET's urban search and rescue dogs. Detectives and fire fighters have now surveyed every floor of the tower to assess its structural integrity.
The blaze, thought to have been started by a faulty fridge, quickly engulfed the building where some 600 people lived.
Trainers insist that the dogs' keen sense of smell is more accurate than technology.