West London bomb blast: 'It was just a mass of panic'

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The Independent Online

A lively Thursday night in Ealing Broadway meant that there was no shortage of witnesses to London's latest bomb blast.

A lively Thursday night in Ealing Broadway meant that there was no shortage of witnesses to London's latest bomb blast.

"We came out and there was a car in flames. It was just like a huge fireball in the middle of the road," said Samantha Illing, a local restaurant worker.

"All the glass from the shop windows just fell to the ground and people ran out of the pub," said 16­year­old witness Nikki Cox.

"It was just a mass of panic," she added.

Seven people ­ including one police officer ­ were taken to nearby Ealing Hospital with injuries that were not life­threatening, a hospital spokeswoman said. Four were admitted and two discharged. Their wounds ­ all caused by flying glass ­ included head, chest and back injuries, a fractured shoulder blade and a dislocated shoulder.

Several witnesses reported seeing distraught people staggering from the scene of the blast.

"I ran out and people were running up the street," resident Simon Offer told Sky television news. "Some people were on the floor, some were having panic attacks. These were people who had been caught up in the explosion."

"Everything shook and I felt the wind through my hair and the vibration, "said 43­year­old Boo Abbass, who was eating in a nearby cafe. "I knew immediately it must be a bomb, it was terrifying. The windows shook."

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