A survivor’s tale Father tells how family escaped Camberwell tower block blaze

A FATHER who survived the Camberwell tower block blaze with his family has told how they owe their lives to the fact they went on to a neighbour's 11th floor balcony.

Rasheed Nuhu, his wife and two children were huddled in a neighbour's bathroom as the fire ripped through the flats.

Rasheed moved with his family out on to a balcony, a decision which saved their lives.

The five neighbours left they in the bathroom eventually died in the inferno.

In an interview with Channel 4 News, he told of his grief and horror at the deaths and his dismay at how long the emergency services took to reach them.

Fire video shows Nuhu family trapped on balcony in Camberwell, south London

He said: "Obviously it's very traumatising, it's extremely traumatising and I'm still trying to come to terms with that.

INFERNO: Fire rips through flats
INFERNO: Fire rips through flats

"It's almost indescribable to me the trauma."

The family had moved into their neighbour, Dayana Cervi's flat to escape the smoke pouring into their own home.

There they gathered in the bathroom with Dayana's two children Thais, six, and Felipe, three, along with fellow neighbour Helen Udoaka, 34, and her daughter Michelle, three weeks, as it had an extractor fan and an access to water and towels.

As that flat as started filling with smoke Rasheed started to look for another way out. He went outside onto the balcony - and his wife and children soon joined him.

The other five could not be persuaded to leave the bathroom - and all perished in the blaze.

Rasheed said he felt let down by emergency services, adding: "I was expecting a helicopter to drop a ladder or a commando rescue."

He also said he was surprised how long it took for help to get to them.

He said: "I was surprised they didn't get to us sooner then they did because of the trust you have in the British emergency services.

"You think they will have enough ladder to get to the 13th floor, and before you know it the ladder was sitting on the roof of the vehicle there and they were not using it.

"I was screaming from the 11th floor 'get the ladder, get the ladder.'"


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