22 people injured when an IED went of on the District Line

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Forensic investigators search next to a London underground tube at Parsons Green station in London, Britain, September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah McKay - RC18C6E3FD30

An explotion on London Undergound this morning at Parsons Green station in Fulham is being treated as a terrorist attack.

22 people were injured when a IED went of on the District Line at 08:20 BST (07:20 GMT) at Parsons Green station in Fulham.

Pictures show a white bucket on fire in a supermarket bag but dose not appear to show extensive damage to the inside of the train carriage.

The District Line train bound for central London had been stopped at the station when the blast happened. Witnesses report
that the train was at the platform longer than usual due to a red signal and that the explosion took place in the last carriage. The following stations are underground which I think was the intended
target, says an eye witness.

Those caught up in the blast reported “panic” as people fled the station, with some saying there was a crush as commuters, including children, tried to get out.

The device is believed to have had a timer attached to it. This would allow the attacker(s) to get off the train at an earlier stop. Unlike in recent attacks
where the assailant has been a suicide bomber this seems to be a different style.

Of the 22 people that were injured 18 of then were taken by ambulance to hospital, 4 of them took themselves to hospital after fleeing the area.
Most of the injured suffered “flash burns” and none of them are thought to be in a life threatening or serious condition.

Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley has said it was caused by the detonation of an improvised explosive device, and the device did not fully detonate.

Passenger, Chris Wildish told Sky News: “A chemical smell came from the train and then a stampede followed as people ran.”

He said he saw “a white builder’s bucket” and “one of those foiled carrier bags”.

Children among injured in London Tube blast

He continued: “There were some flames coming from the bucket, wires hanging from it and a strong smell of chemicals coming from the bucket. A chemical smell more than a burning smell.”

Mr Wildish described seeing people with “lots of burns” and “some very distressed children, very distressed ladies”.

“One, slightly older gentleman, had very bad burns around his face,” he said.

Luke Walmsley told of seeing a “flash” and “smoke” and “people running towards me”.

“People just started sprinting. And then smoke just started to rise as people fled,” he told Sky News.

“It was sort of every man for himself when that happened. The burn victims had severe leg injuries.

“It was a very busy commuter train, young and old, school children going to their schools. One of the most daunting images I saw was nannies trying to look for kids, because of the rush of people just taking five and six year old’s away from them and they were trying to look for them.”

Picture from the BBC

He added: “I thought about this the other day. I wondered: Is my route safe? And I thought ‘yes, my route is safe’. And now this happens.”

The Prime Minster has chaired an emergency COBRA committee meeting. Following the meeting the Prime Minister condemned the “cowardly” terror attack.

Mrs May said the UK’s terror threat level will stay at severe, meaning an attack is highly likely, although this is going to be kept under review.

The PM added: “The police and the security services are doing all the work to discover the full circumstances of this cowardly attack”

“The threat of terrorism that we face is severs , but by working together we will defeat them”

The PM also said: “We do need to ensure we are dealing with not just the terrorist threat but with the extremism and the hate that can actually incite that terrorism.

“That is why we are looking very carefully at the powers that our police and security services have to make sure they have the powers they need.”

The PM also slapped down US President Donald Trump over his tweet in which he claimed the Parsons Green bomber had been “in the sights” of Scotland Yard and stressed the need to be “proactive”.

Mrs May said: “I never think it’s helpful for anybody to speculate on what is an ongoing investigation.”

The Metropolitan Police also said Mr Trump’s comments were “unhelpful” and “pure speculation”.

You can expect a heightened police presents on the undergound and around London throughout today and the next few days. Police have urged the public to be vigilant and anyone with information to call them on 0800 789 321 and upload videos or photos
to a secure website.

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