Firefighters yet to fully search burnt London tower block: fire brigade chief

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Smoke rises from the building after a huge fire engulfed the 24 story Grenfell Tower in west London.

Police say six people are known to have died but expect the figure to rise.

"I do anticipate that the number of fatalities will sadly increase beyond those 12", Police Commander Stuart Cundy said.

(AP Photo/Matt Dunham). Firefighters rest as they take a break in battling a massive fire that raged in a high-rise apartment building in London, Wednesday, June 14, 2017.

"There will be a great many questions over the coming days as to the cause of this tragedy", he said, "and I want to reassure Londoners that we will get all the answers".

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Many people are still missing and firefighters are facing hazardous conditions as they search the charred building.

Another resident, called Zara, said she saw a woman throw her son, who was about five years old, from a fifth or sixth floor window to escape the blaze.

A remote fighting platform with hoses and cameras is moved into place near Grenfell Tower.

The toll in the London fire incident that had destroyed a 24-storey block apartment in north Kensington rose to 17 on Thursday, BBC reported.

British Prime Minister Theresa May visited the scene of the fire on Thursday morning (local time).

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The building had recently undergone an 8.7 million pound ($11.1 million) exterior refurbishment, which included new external cladding and windows.

Cotton said the search operation would be a "very long process".

Prince Philip and I would like to pay tribute to the bravery of firefighters and other emergency services officers who put their own lives at risk to save others.

The queen's grandsons, Prince William and Prince Harry, along with William's wife Kate, donated to a relief fund organised by London's local Evening Standard newspaper.

"People were starting to appear at the windows, frantically banging and screaming", and one woman indicated she was going to drop the baby, Lamrani told Britain's Press Association news agency.

It said on its blog that it has raised concerns about testing and maintenance of firefighting equipment and blocked emergency access to the site. Some residents said no alarm had sounded. Members of the organization say they repeatedly warned authorities about blocked exit areas and other safety hazards.

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