FIREFIGHTERS thought they had extinguished the small blaze that triggered the Grenfell Tower tragedy before realising it had spread, it has emerged.
A crew were called to a flat on one of the lower floors when a faulty fridge caught fire, senior sources told the BBC’s Panoroma.
They put out flames inside the flat but then spotted that more were shooting up the side of the building.
The fire should have been easily contained but flammable cladding on the exterior let it rage out of control, the fire chiefs said.
Had it not been for the cladding, official advice to residents to stay put would have been correct.
In a programme about the blaze, broadcast on Monday, Panorama presenter Richard Bilton said: ‘The fire in the flat was out — the plan was working, the danger should have been over.’
The programme included mobile phone footage filmed by other firefighters as they arrived at the scene as the blaze engulfed the tower. One was heard saying: ‘Oh s***. How is that possible? How is that happening?’