Building in flames in Milan, building maintenance records are in the hands of prosecutors. The obligation of “fire-resistant panels” from 2019 and the “critiques” of the fire protection system: all doubts about the deployment

Building in flames in Milan, building maintenance records are in the hands of prosecutors.  The obligation of “fire-resistant panels” from 2019 and the “critiques” of the fire protection system: all doubts about the deployment

While I firefighters are still at work to secure what remains of the skyscraper in via Antonini, that Sunday in Milan it was on fire in less than 30 minutes, all hypotheses about how such a rapid spread of the flames was possible are still being explored by the researchers. Prosecutor Tiziana Siciliano, head of the department dealing with environmental and labor crimes, has opened a file for an attributable disaster, currently against unknown persons, focusing on building facade cladding panels “Burned like cardboard” and on the fire protection system, which some tenants of the 60-meter-high building between the fifth and tenth floors said were not functioning. So much so that the records of the maintenance and overhaul work on the skyscraper were traced by the firefighters and obtained during the investigation. The finger is pointed at the security holes in the building, which in fact also includes the material used in the cladding panels, Alucobond, the same, according to prosecutors, also used for the Grenfell Tower Londoner burned down in 2017, killing 72.

Meanwhile, we also try to understand where did the fire come from?. Initially, all hypotheses centered on a short circuit of an air conditioner, a battery that was charging and overheating, or a lamp, probably coming from the fifteenth-floor apartment, as seen in a first-ever amateur video that has been circulating in recent hours. did. But the concierge’s statements seem to conflict with this hypothesis: The man, overheard by the investigators, stated that the electricity in the apartment “had been cut off,” probably by the owner before going on vacation. It is therefore necessary to clarify whether the fire actually originated from that interior and if so, from what causes. However, by disconnecting the light from the meter, the owner may have excluded some appliances from the block, such as the refrigerator.

And for the tenants, who met today in an extraordinary meeting to “formulate a plan of action beyond the emergency phase”, according to Republic there is also the hypothesis that we will not be able to return to the building: firefighters and civil defense volunteers who have inspected it think it is almost impossible to save anything and that is why the skyscraper will most likely be gone soon. The residents, meanwhile, have asked the mayor Beppe Sala to meet and also launch an Iban to raise money for “aid” for the residents of “Antonini 32/34”, the building that caught fire.

The panels and the obligation of fire-resistant material only from 2019 – As already released with the first rumors of the investigations circulating Monday, the first “suspect” for the “near tragedy” is the material in the panels of aluminum bond, composed of two external blades of aluminium and a core of fabrics minerals flame retardant, which may have acted as “gasoline”. Indeed, it is established that the sheets “burned as if they were made of cardboard”, according to the prosecutors themselves. And that is why the analyzes of the skyscraper’s vulnerabilities are one of the central points of the guilty disaster investigation. According to Republic they will also be aided by the images of a spherocam, capable of shooting 360 degrees and at a very high resolution, to give certainty about the material used to “fill” the panels. To understand, we still read on Courier serviceeven if the panels have been installed correctly, according to specifications, or if additional insulation or foam has been used and therefore not foreseen by the company producing the coatings.

The records of maintenance and overhaul activities have in fact already been acquired. And it is not excluded that the detectives will concentrate later, acquiring documents, also on the premises of the skyscraper, the Moro real estate, from the real estate developer Alberto Moro, who incorporated the “Moro Costruzioni” that built the same building in 2011 and, according to the Courier service, on the Isogen Saint Gobain, from Pisa, who produced the cladding instead. According to theAnsa, as a guarantee for the technical investigations, the registrations of builders, project leaders and designers in the suspects register could soon be entered.

Another obscure point remains that of legislation which the prosecutor himself described as “very recent”. The tower in via Antonini was completed in 2011 when the fire safety requirements of the facades, as reported by the Corriere della Sera, they were just “recommendations”. And so they are stayed until 2019 when a decree from the Ministry of the Interior made the law a first recommendation circular. The decree specifies the engineer Michele Mazzaro, deputy central director for fire prevention of the fire service, heard by the Courier service“It concerns buildings built after the entry into force of the decree and buildings to which more than 50% of the facade has been adapted.” And that’s why the skyscraper that caught fire would be ruled out. However, the researchers specify, “It’s one thing to use non-fire resistant panels, another product that promotes and nourishes the flames. The coatings don’t have to burn like that.”

The fire suppression system – Another line of research concerns thebuilding fire protection system. What is certain is that the system had several “critical issues” and in particular the system vents that had to be manually activated only worked up to the fifth floor and were inactive between the fifth and tenth floors, while partially working from the tenth to the tenth floor. eighteenth floor. The tenants themselves stated that the water in the five floors indicted did not come out and that the firefighters themselves could not use the internal system, which was partly faulty. Some firefighters, as reported by the Courier service, talked about “smoke-filled” emergency stairs as well as some floors. However, it is certain that the stairs were able to safely evacuate the people who were fleeing. In fact, no victims were registered except for “a dog”, as the deputy prosecutor stated yesterday Tiziana Siciliano who is coordinating the investigation.

The origin of the bet – No malice but doubts also about the origin of the bet. The firefighters, after extinguishing several outbreaks that had been reactivated overnight, returned for an inspection of the 15th-floor apartment where the fire was supposed to have started and asked the company treating her for energy consumption data. check whether there were abnormal peaks before the fire. However, the statements of the caretaker, who spoke of “disconnected electricity” in relation to the apartment, could lead to doubts. See you this morning, second Republic, there were two hypotheses in the field: the fire could have started both inside and outside the apartment on the fifteenth floor, which had been uninhabited for two weeks due to the summer holidays. In the first case, the cause may be an overheated lithium battery charger, a faulty air conditioner, or a shorted device. In the second case, the defective part may have been left outside and overheated by the sun. Now, however, with the caretaker’s latest statements, it will be necessary to conduct new investigations to verify that the first fire actually started from that locked apartment. Partly for this reason, the fire service immediately asked the company that supplies the electricity for the data.

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