Headlines > Teenage survivor took exam after Grenfell Tower fire

Posted on June 20, 2017

Image by Natalie_Oxford

Ines Alves sat reading her revision notes next to the burning building; Dimi Dyakova reports
The Grenfell Tower fire occurred on the night of 14 June 2017 in a high tower block in West London.

Since then, the police have been investigating what triggered the fire, which hasn’t been confirmed yet. However, theories include a gas explosion, a faulty fridge or wiring.

Whatever the cause, a teenage survivor, named Ines Alves, 16, also grabbed the attention of many. The young girl had an exam in the morning after the disaster and, instead of going to the hospital for a check up, she went to the exam hall.

Her father, Miguel, who was present when the fire happened, said, “I was in the lift, I pressed 13, and somebody pressed four. When the doors opened at the fourth floor, where the fire had started, smoke billowed into the lift. I just came out of the lift because I didn’t know what was going on, and I went up by the staircase to wake up my son and daughter.”

Reports say that Ines ran out of the building holding only her phone and her Chemistry revision notes. She said, “If I’m not sleeping, I may as well be studying.”

When discussing how Ines managed to focus on her exams and not let the fire terror affect her, Ines said, “It was at the back of my mind, but I managed to do the exam. I don’t think I did too badly.’’

What I think
I think that the girl was very brave to have done such a thing. Nowadays, some young people try to avoid doing an exam, whereas Ines wasn’t afraid to face it, no matter what she had been through the night before.

I can’t possibly imagine what she and everyone else affected by the fire are going through. My thoughts are with all the victims and their families.

What do you think? Please comment below.

Dimi Dyakova
Dimi is a student at Winchmore School. She loves writing, reading books and listening to music. She would like to develop her passion into a career as a journalist or writer one day.


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9 Responses to Teenage survivor took exam after Grenfell Tower fire

  1. Shakira June 20, 2017 at 11:54 am #

    She is so brave… all the family are… and their father was part of thier Tenants Associations calling for extra fire safety… (4:52 in the video). Its lucky she survived and was able to sit through her exam and life the rest of her life.. I hope all the survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire are safe, many of which were families with teenagers and younger children.

    • Dimi June 22, 2017 at 10:19 am #

      I agree with you, Shakira. I hope everyone affected by it manages to continue with their life and I hope no one ever has to face such a thing ever again.

      • Shakira Dyer June 30, 2017 at 8:42 am #

        Maybe, as she loves Chemistry, she could one day develop fire-resistant cladding?

  2. Maria June 21, 2017 at 11:58 am #

    What self-control!
    The author of the article is right- there are so many young people who are trying to avoid the exams with no reason, but she has had the courage to face the Chemistry exam, although she has witnessed the tragedy and probably realising what a lucky she is.
    Good article!

    • Dimi June 22, 2017 at 10:16 am #

      I completely agree. And thank you very much 🙂

  3. Shakira June 25, 2017 at 8:50 pm #

    This is a poem written by one of the survivors of the fire: https://www.ft.com/content/39022f72-5742-11e7-80b6-9bfa4c1f83d2

  4. Shakira June 26, 2017 at 9:45 am #

    >a faulty fridge

    Theory confirmed. On 23rd June 2017 – the Metropolitan police have said it was a Hotpoint fridge freezer. This is only one article about it by the BBC, but you can surely find many more out there: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40380584 My theory is that usually, without the isulative cladding, the fire would have stayed inside the apartment it started in – however because the cladding wasn’t made with fire resistant materials, it did spread around the whole building.

    According to the Gaurdian, Hotpoint is now telling owner if this frigde brand to check thier frigdes shttps://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/jun/23/hotpoint-tells-customers-to-check-fridge-freezers-after-grenfell-tower-fire.

    • Shakira June 26, 2017 at 9:46 am #

      Hotpoint is now telling owner if this fridge brand to check thier fridges

      typo edit: Owners of.

  5. Shakira Dyer June 30, 2017 at 8:41 am #

    Sadly her father , even through he was part of the resident’s union, would not have been part of that council meeting they (nearly) held yesterday.

    They would have not even allowed the press in, but eventually they were allowed in because of a ‘legal intervention’. (I think this was good – because the press could then tell the concerned public what was said.)


    According to this article, one of the reasons the people weren’t allowed in was because ‘I have agreed the meeting be held in private, given the subject under discussion and the recent real threats of assault on council staff and damage to buildings.”I am advised that, if there are others present, we cannot have an open discussion.” ‘

    Source: Tom Batchelor, ‘Grenfell Fire: Kensignton council cancels meeting after High Court jugde lets journalists attend’, The Independent, 29th June 2017

    This was said by Nicholas Paget-Brown, the leader of Kensington and Chelsea borough.

    I am so glad that such protests have not degenerated into riots. (OR that people from elsewhere ran in to ‘start’ a riot) Although people are rightfully angry, rioting will not help the people who need an answer.

    And it seems that the people aren’t – they just want answers.

    Someone could write something about this.

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