Belfast Telegraph

I had counselling for Grenfell trauma, says fire chief

By Jemma Crew

London Fire Brigade commissioner Dany Cotton has revealed she received counselling after the Grenfell Tower blaze.

Ms Cotton said she had sought professional help but admitted she had not "really stopped yet" due to ongoing fire safety concerns sparked by the high-rise fire, which killed at least 80.

She said the mental health of her firefighters was "really key", adding that she was trying to process the "overwhelming sense of responsibility" she had felt when they were battling flames inside the burning tower.

She added: "There's a lot of work that needs to be done going forward to make sure that something terrible like this never happens again, so for me, I feel a responsibility for my firefighters.

"Their mental health and well-being has been really key for me and we've been doing a massive amount of work from that. At some point, I will stop myself.

"I have been having counselling myself because it's really important that it's something that people need to talk about and work through to try and stop them having problems in the future."

More than 250 firefighters tackled the June 14 blaze, which Scotland Yard said had started in a faulty Hotpoint fridge-freezer.

She said it was "okay not to be okay" adding, "the important thing is to keep talking about it".

Belfast Telegraph

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