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Grenfell fire chief Dany Cotton should QUIT, says former fire minister


A former fire service minister today backs calls for London Fire Brigade boss Dany Cotton to resign over her ‘blind’ handling of the Grenfell Tower disaster Conservative MP Sir Mike Penning, who was a firefighter before he entered politics, said she must carry the can for the fatal advice to residents to ‘stay put’ in their homes as the blaze took hold He supported demands by relatives of the 72 people who died in the fire for Miss Cotton to leave her post – and said if she refused to do so, London Mayor Sadiq Khan should dismiss her Miss Cotton has apologised for causing ‘additional hurt’ to the families of Grenfell Tower victims, but has refused to quit She defended the decision to tell residents to ‘stay put’ in the June 2017 fire – and plans to retire next April, aged 50, on a pension worth up to £2million London Fire Brigade boss Dany Cotton has faced calls to resign over her ‘blind’ handling of the Grenfell Tower disaster RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next The unsung hero of Grenfell: Incredible bravery of off-duty Families of Grenfell Tower victims hit out at ‘tone deaf’. Share this article Share Sir Mike, who was the Home Office minister responsible for the fire service in 2016, told the Daily Mail: ‘The London Fire Brigade (LFB) knew at the time of the fire that there was a serious risk of fire in tower blocks fitted with cladding systems This should have been taken seriously and could have led to a review of the “stay- put” strategy ‘These are failings of fire brigade senior managers and, ultimately – whether she was personally aware or not – the responsibility lies with Miss Cotton The brigade’s apparent lack of preparation for this kind of fire is inexcusable.’He added: ‘To be blind to what could have been done on the night in hindsight makes her position untenable If she doesn’t resign then her employer, Sadiq Khan, must relieve her of her duties ’ Conservative MP Sir Mike Penning, who was a firefighter before he entered politics, said she must carry the can for the fatal advice to residents to ‘stay put’ in their homes as the blaze took holdMiss Cotton has said she was ‘disappointed’ by Grenfell Inquiry chairman Sir Martin Moore-Bick’s report for criticising named firefighters for their response After initially telling the inquiry that there was nothing she would have done differently at Grenfell, she has now admitted she would ‘do different things’ after learning lessons following the inferno But she vowed to stay on, arguing she wanted to ‘continue to protect the people of London’ The Moore-Bick report concluded that the LFB breached national guidelines over its ‘gravely inadequate’ preparations and did not have a plan to evacuate the tower Asked if she would quit, Miss Cotton said: ‘No, I won’t. I will retire in six months’ time because my commitment is to making those changes, and if I resign I can’t do that ’Sir Mike challenged her comments, saying: ‘Having the top fire service job means Miss Cotton bears ultimate responsibility The lack of compassion she displayed in her comments to the Grenfell Inquiry, and the hurt she caused, is deeply upsetting ‘By saying that there was nothing she would have done differently that night she appears to lack a fundamental understanding of the pain and distress that short and unnecessary sentence caused to the victims ’Sir Mike said the fire brigade was under a legal duty to hold the required information to help tackle major fires He said the inquiry’s report told how firefighters had visited Grenfell during renovations when the cladding was fitted – but were not qualified to carry out such an inspection   After initially telling the inquiry that there was nothing she would have done differently at Grenfell, Miss Cotton has now admitted she would ‘do different things’ after learning lessons following the inferno Pictured: Grenfell Tower at 5am on June 14, 2017

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