Thousands Evacuated over Suspected Gas Leak in Central London

Thousands Evacuated over Suspected Gas Leak in Central London

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Thousands of people have been evacuated in central London over fears of a gas leak.

As technicians scrambled to isolate the leak, London Fire Brigade (LFB) said it had told around 2,000 people to leave Southwark Street, a bustling thoroughfare lined with businesses, offices and hotels linking London Bridge and Blackfriars, The Independent reported.

Urging people to avoid the area, the fire brigade said just before 3pm on Wednesday afternoon that the street had been cordoned off and several buildings evacuated as a precaution.

In a further update an hour later, LFB said: “We remain at the scene of a suspected gas leak in Southwark Street, by the junction of Great Suffolk Street.

“Around 2,000 people have been evacuated from buildings as a precaution with no injuries reported.

“Traffic is very heavy and people are advised to keep avoiding the area.”

Gas technicians were on site and working to isolate the gas leak and make the scene safe, the fire brigade said shortly after 5pm.

While a large number of those evacuated had since left the area, traffic was still heavily disrupted and a cordon remained in place, with the 381 bus route reported to have been diverted.

In a statement issued shortly before 9:30pm, a spokesperson for gas distribution firm SGN said: “Following the incident in Southwark Street earlier today, the road has reopened while a reduced cordon remains in place so that we can continue our work at this location.

“The majority of properties are now able to be reoccupied, including all residential addresses, restaurants and hotels. Just three offices and a museum remain evacuated.

“We’re very sorry for the inconvenience caused this afternoon to people who work and live in the area.”

There are a number of hotels situated at the affected junction, which is also populated with multi-storey office blocks and an Amazon Fresh supermarket. Lying just south of the Thames, Southwark Street is also close to notable landmarks such as Borough Market, the Shard, the Tate Modern and Globe Theatre.

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