Fears over cladding on South Tyrone Hospital tower block

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The Southern Health Trust has been ordered to carry out an immediate safety review on cladding on the South Tyrone Hospital block after the Grenfell Tower disaster.

The cladding, which was used in the renovation of the hospital tower block in 2013, will be reviewed by experts.

The extensive refurbishment of the hospital’s external facade, which took eighty weeks to complete and was part of a £2.9m investment, included new windows, replacement of the exterior facade with modern cladding and essential structural repairs.

Independent Republican Councillor Barry Monteith said: ““There is a major issue of public confidence here. We need information and we need it quickly.

There is considerable concern locally about South Tyrone Hospital and the cladding which was fitted in the last few years.

The Southern Trust needs to immediately clarify if this cladding is the same type as that which seems to have contributed to the horrendous loss of life in London. I would call on all public bodies to clarify if any of their facilities have had cladding fitted.”

A spokesperson for the Southern Trust said: “In line with the recent Department of Health communication to all HSC bodies, the trust is undertaking an immediate assessment of fire safety precautions of trust facilities including checks on the type of cladding used.

“All necessary precautions will be taken to ensure the safety of staff and patients.”

A Department of Health spokesman added: “We have asked Health and Social Care bodies to undertake an immediate assessment of their fire safety precautions as a result of the tragic incident in London, including checks on the type of cladding used.”