If you were passing through the West End last night around 11pm, you may well have run into the barriers blocking off Piccadilly in both directions.
You might even have been near enough Fortnum and Mason’s to see the flames spewing from the pavement and smoke pouring out, which had passers-by terrified about the explosion, while a series of loud bangs reverberated around the area.
So what happened? The Standard is reporting that Scotland Yard has said the explosions happened because of an electrical fault underground, although the police and London Fire Brigade are still investigating.
A witness reported that that “a manhole cover started moving up and down and smoke started coming out”, then “the fire got more intense and dramatic with loud bangs”.
Here’s a video from the scene of the explosions: