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Council 'told about danger of families in tower blocks'

Council 'told about danger of families in tower blocks' Credit: BPM media

Birmingham City Council had been warned that a tragedy could happen before the death of an 18-month-old girl who fell from a tower block.

The little girl, named locally as Elean, fell to her death from a window on the seventh floor of Ryland House, in Newtown, on Monday.

It is not yet known how, or why, she fell but there is speculation that the heatwave led to the window being left open, and she may have crawled out.

But local councillor Ziaul Islam revealed he had already warned the authorities of the dangers of putting families with children in high-rises.

For too long now local people have been telling us their worries about the safety of windows in these tower blocks.

I have raised the issue in the past but now, in the light of this awful death, I will be raising it again.

We simply shouldn’t be putting families with young children so high up in these blocks.

There are too many of these blocks with families inside them, with their unprotected windows.

– Ziaul Islam
Flowers left outside tower block Credit: BPM media

At the time, local people spoke of their anger at the alleged lack of adequate safety catches on the windows.

They said that in hot temperatures people were able to over-ride the safety catches and push open the windows fully.

Elean’s parents were migrants from the Sudan, who had been in the UK since the start of the year.

They had been living in seventh-floor flat for just two months.

Council 'told about danger of families in tower blocks' Credit: BPM media

Yesterday, Councillor Islam and two other Aston councillors were due to visit the parents, who were believed to be staying with friends.

Ryland House, in Great Hampton Row, is owned and managed by Birmingham City Council, which has refused to comment about the safety of the windows until after the police investigation.

A spokeswoman for West Midlands Police said they were awaiting the result of the post mortem examination and that the death remained unexplained.

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