Wuppertal evacuates tower block over Grenfell-like cladding

Arconic, the USA supplier of the cladding used in a recent refurbishment of the tower, announced Monday that it was stopping sales of the material for high-rise buildings.

City authorities in Wuppertal said the fire risk at the building had been reassessed following the fire in London that killed at least 79 people, news agency dpa reported.

An apartment building in a northwestern German city was evacuated Tuesday because of fears that its exterior insulation is similar to materials that allowed the deadly fire that torched London's Grenfell Tower to spread. All the samples submitted so far — coming from 95 buildings around England — have failed fire safety standards.

During the cabinet meeting on Tuesday, the Prime Minister told ministers: "There will need to be a major national investigation into what's gone wrong, when cladding that's failing the tests has been fitted on buildings in this country over a number of decades". She said the Wuppertal building's fire escape routes also relied on external balconies that could not be used if the facade material caught fire, and it was too tall to use ladders for evacuations.

The fire in London has raised concerns about the cladding used on the facades of buildings, mainly for insulation or to improve their appearance.

It also today established an expert advisory panel to look at any immediate action meeded so the public could be confident everything possible was being done to make all public and private buildings safe as quickly as possible.

She said officials had been concerned about this particular building since 2010, but made a decision to act now after seeing how fire could spread rapidly via a flammable cladding or facade.

Police on Tuesday formally identified a 5-year-old boy as one of youngest victims of the disaster.

'He was such a good boy who was loved by his friends and family. "We will all miss our kind, energetic, generous little boy".

Arconic said on Monday that it was discontinuing sales of Reynobond PE for tower blocks due to "issues" identified by the fire.