Grenfell Tower inquiry: 9 issues we now know concerning the cladding

Grenfell Tower

By Tom Symonds
Home affairs correspondent, BBC News

image copyrightReuters

Panels made from plastic and aluminium were installed on the sides of Grenfell Tower to make it warmer and drier. But the cladding has been blamed for helping flames to spread when fire broke out in June 2017, resulting in 72 deaths.

Hundreds of thousands of people are living in buildings with similar cladding, which must now be removed at enormous cost, resulting in a crisis in building safety.

The public inquiry has questioned key employees of Arconic, the multinational metals company that made and supplied the cladding sheets for Grenfell.

So, what have we discovered?

1. This type of cladding burns easily

The big concern is about a type of cladding called Aluminium Composite Material, or ACM. It is made from polyethylene (PE), plastic sandwiched between two very thin sheets of aluminium.

France-based Arconic Architectural Products called its version of the product Reynobond PE, and sold it to big building…