The London Fire Brigade (LFB) has revealed that it has been interviewed under caution by police investigating the Grenfell Tower fire, which killed 72 people in 2017.
London fire commissioner Dany Cotton said she recognised that survivors and the bereaved “need answers” and that the fire service was committed to assisting investigators.
“We have always been subject to the Metropolitan Police investigation and I want to ensure it is accurately and publicly known the brigade has now, voluntarily, given an interview ‘under caution in relation to the Health and Safety at Work Act’,” she said today.
“As the fire and rescue service attending the Grenfell Tower fire it is entirely correct that we are part of the investigation. Hundreds of firefighters, officers and control officers have already provided voluntary police interviews and we will continue to do all we can to assist investigators.”
She said the LFB is committed to finding out what happened in order to “prevent communities and emergency services from ever being placed in such impossible conditions ever again”.
Firefighters, officers and control officers would continue to be supported throughout the investigation and the ongoing public inquiry, she said.
The LFB was interviewed as a corporate body, rather than an individual, in relation to sections two and three of the Health and Safety at Work Act.
They include a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety and welfare of all employees and make sure others are not exposed to health or safety risks by its conduct.
It is one of 17 interviews under caution carried out by police investigating the Grenfell Tower fire to date, but the Metropolitan Police has suggested that this number will increase.
The interviews under caution relate to issues of gross negligence manslaughter, corporate manslaughter, and health and safety offences.
Just over 7,100 statements have been taken from witnesses, community and family members, emergency services personnel, and others as part of the police probe into the tragedy so far.
In March, police said that no charges were likely to be brought for at least the next two years, arguing that it would be “wrong” not to wait for the final report of the inquiry.
The second phase of the inquiry is due to start next year.