Khan said the fire service would usually expect 500 calls on a busy day, but had received more than 2,600 calls on Tuesday, when more than a dozen fires were raging at the same time.Fire brigades in London, Leicestershire and South Yorkshire declared major incidents on Tuesday, as fires destroyed business, houses, schools and churches.
Khan said he spoke on Wednesday morning to the fire commissioner, who expressed concern about the potential for further fires. Asked if the need to get net zero by 2050 was in danger of being ignored, Khan said it “beggared belief” that global heating was not being spoken about more prominently by the Conservative leadership candidates. “Look, it’s unarguable now that the weather we’ve faced in our city and in our country over the last few days is a direct consequence of climate change,” he said. “We should be dealing with the consequences of climate change adaptations of our cities and country, public transport homes and so forth, but also dealing with the causes of climate change as well.”
Sixteen firefighters were injured tackling blazes in the capital on the hottest day of the year, with two admitted to hospital, according to the London fire brigade’s assistant commissioner, Jonathan Smith. Smith told Times Radio: “The conditions that our firefighters were operating in were unprecedented – operating in 40C heat, needing to drag significant amount of hose across fields, making sure we were rescuing people where we needed to.”