Southgate Tube station explosion

Southgate Tube station explosion

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A man has been arrested over an explosion at Southgate Underground station that left five people injured when passengers fled in mass panic.

The 23-year-old was held by police on suspicion of “doing an act likely to cause an explosion to injure or damage property” on Tuesday night.

British Transport Police said on Wednesday morning that the small blast at the Tube station in north London is believed to have been caused by a faulty drill battery.

Officers were called to reports of people running at the station at shortly after 7pm. One man on a “packed” escalator said some people had been “trampled” in the commotion.

Police said the arrested man, from Enfield, was detained “on suspicion of doing an act likely to cause an explosion to injure or damage property, and endangering safety on the railway.”

 

Emergency services at the scene at Southgate 

A spokesman said he has been released under investigation pending further enquiries.

They added: “The incident, which left five people with minor injuries, is believed to have been caused by a faulty drill battery.”

Tube passenger James Ayton, 34, from Southgate, was on the escalator when he saw a “quick burst” of flames at the top.

He said the flames were “six foot plus” and everyone “legged it”.

Emergency services arrive at the scene

Mr Ayton said: “It wasn’t a bang. It was like a very rapid whooshing sound.”

He said the escalator was “packed”, adding: “The Tube had just unloaded. The escalator was full.”

Mr Ayton said: “A few people got trampled on on the escalator. There was screaming.

“An old woman got trampled on. I had to carry a woman up the stairs. I think she was in shock to be honest. She couldn’t walk, shaking.”

He said he saw a Tube worker pick something up that was on fire and extinguish it but he added: “I think that was secondary rather than the cause.”

Reports of a minor explosion inside Southgate Tube Station

London Ambulance Service said two people had been taken to hospital and three others were treated at the scene in north London for minor injuries.

A spokeswoman said: “We have treated three patients at the scene for minor injuries and have taken two people to hospital.”

The Metropolitan Police said: “It appears at this stage that the cause of the explosion was a battery short circuit.

“The Met Police and BTP (British Transport Police) are working together to establish the full facts.”

Transport officials outside Southgate Tube station

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan praised emergency services for “a swift and professional response” to the incident.

British Transport Police (BTP) confirmed the incident was not believed to be terror-related.

There were reports on social media that residents living nearby were being asked to evacuate buildings as officers continue to assess the level of threat.

City worker Darren Yarlett, 36, said: “The police moved us on, but they said there was an explosion in the station.

“There must be around 50 or 60 police, an ambulance, fire arms and dog units.”


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