Firefighters battle massive blaze in London high-rise

Firefighters battled a massive fire and evacuated residents from a burning 27-floor high-rise apartment building in west London early Wednesday morning, sending at least 30 people to hospitals, emergency officials said.

The Metropolitan Police said two people were being treated at the scene for smoke inhalation and cordons were in place. Forty fire engines and 200 firefighters and officers were called to the Grenfell Tower in Latimer Road, White City, in west London.

Fire raced through the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in North Kensington around 01:00.

It is unclear how many people are still in the building, but witnesses who escaped reported terrifying accounts of people trapped in the tower as they fled.

"I could see it from my garden, it was just there, the left-hand side piece there, just a couple of floors, and over the hours it just spread and it's gone around the left of the building as well", she said. "I can not confirm the number at this time due to the size and complexity of this building, and it would clearly be wrong for me to speculate further".

"Unfortunately, the Grenfell Action Group have reached the conclusion that only an incident that results in serious loss of life of KCTMO residents will allow the external scrutiny to occur that will shine a light on the practices that characterise the malign governance of this non-functioning organisation".

Ambulances and fire trucks filled the streets around the building, which is located in a diverse, working class area of London.

London mayor Sadiq Khan said in a statement: "There will be a great many questions over the coming days as to the cause of this tragedy and I want to reassure Londoners that we will get all the answers". "A lot of people said 'Help, help, help.' The fire brigade could only help downstairs".

The leader of Kensington and Chelsea Borough Nick Paget-Brown said "several hundred" people would have been in the block when the fire broke out.

"We saw the people screaming", she said.

"I have seen it with my own eyes".

No confirmation has yet been made on any deaths in the fire.

Edward Daffarn says he was on the 16th floor and heard a neighbor's smoke alarm go off and another neighbor called and told him to get out.

Nicky Paramasivan, who was in his seventh floor flat with his partner and child, said the advice issued to residents in the event of a fire was to stay in their flats.

George Clarke, who presents the Channel 4 TV show Amazing Spaces, told Radio 5 Live: "I'm 100 metres away and I'm absolutely covered in ash".

"As I was going down the stairs, there were firefighters, truly incredible firefighters that were actually going upstairs, to the fire, trying to get as many people out of the building as possible", he told the BBC.

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