Thursday, July 07, 2005

Bus Bomb From Reuters

rinter Friendly | Email Article | RSS By Trevor Datson LONDON (Reuters) - "I was on the bus. I looked round and the seats behind me were gone." More than that the middle-aged victim of the bus blast in central London could or would not say. Shocked, disorientated, and with oil and pieces of debris in her hair and clothes, she asked for directions to Holborn but refused all offers of help. The scene around Russell Square in the city's heart was one of bewilderment, with little reliable information available on what had actually happened. Traffic wardens, police support officers and private security guards were all drafted in to man the cordons. Policemen spoke of "a bomb" or "bombs," or of "explosions". The slowly expanding police cordon pushed before it droves of confused office workers, evacuated from the surrounding streets. The cellphone networks quickly became jammed with callers trying to reassure loved ones of their safety, and shops filled with people begging the use of a phone. Some young women in a hairdressers' shop were in tears. People talked of hearing explosions, but the lightly concealed panic as the police combed the area for bombs made any degree of clarity impossible. Traffic halted completely, engines off, the police lines blocking escape routes for all but cycles and motorcycles. But the uncanny absence of motor noise was hidden by the constant howl of sirens. Two hundred metres away, the flashing lights and ambulance traffic bore witness to the fact that something had gone horribly wrong. But what? Not knowing was the worst thing.

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