An insulation company that produced flammable insulation used on Grenfell Tower deliberately cheated to pass a fire safety test, an inquiry into the blaze has heard.
Fire ripped through the 24-storey Grenfell Tower in North Kensington, London in June 2017, killing 72 people, including a stillbirth.
The block underwent refurbishment in 2016 and Harley Facades and building control officer, John Hoban, were given, and relied upon, a fire safety certificate for Celotex's Rs5000 insulation, supplied by the Local Authority Building Control.
Former Celotex employees have now admitted to manipulating a key fire safety test to pass the product for high-rise buildings, with Jonathan Roper, the ex-assistant product manager at Celotex, admitting the firm had been "dishonest".
On Tuesday, November 17, a hearing heard the LABC lifted word-for-word a description of the product suggested by Roper in an email.
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An "untrue and misleading" certificate was then issued on August 2014, and the product was later used in the refurbishment of Grenfell.
Inquiry lawyer, Richard Millett QC, asked Mr Roper: "The quote is taken exactly from the wording you had suggested … it even includes the spaces before and after the bracket.
"Can you account for how it comes about that the LABC has simply lifted your text from your email and put it into a formal document?"
Mr Roper said he didn’t know how the text had been lifted, but added: "That’s exactly what the business wanted."
He then agreed with Mr Millet who said the certificate "was as untrue and misleading as the language" on the document and said the misrepresentation of the fire test was "intentional, deliberate and dishonest".
The inquiry heard Celotex employees had, in 2014, falsified technical drawings and failing to declare a fire-resisting material had been included in the test.
Drawings of the cladding system tested included ventilation gaps of 10mm had been used between panels, while in fact, they had been "very minimal" and smaller than reported.
In a statement, Celotex said: "In the course of investigations carried out by Celotex after the Grenfell Tower fire, certain issues emerged concerning the testing, certification and marketing of Celotex's products … These matters involved unacceptable conduct on the part of a number of employees.
"They should not have happened and Celotex has taken concerted steps to ensure that no such issues reoccur."
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