July 7 eyewitness accounts: ‘The roof blew five metres off the bus’
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Raj Mattoo, a 35 year-old support manager for a charity, was on board the number 91 bus travelling through Tavistock Square on Thursday morning when he saw a bus coming in the opposite direction.
“All of a sudden the roof of the approaching bus was blown five metres into the air before it fell in front of the bus,” Mr Mattoo said, adding that he thought the bomb had been on the top deck. “People on my bus were in complete shock and were panicking but they evacuated the bus in an orderly fashion within 30 seconds.”
Mr Mattoo said the people on the bus torn apart by the explosion were desperately trying to get off. “The explosion was quite contained but there was smoke everywhere.”
Angelo Power, a 43 year-old lawyer, was on London Underground’s Circle Line when a bomb went off. He said there had been an annoucement at Mansion House station saying there were technical problems on eastbound trains. A few seconds after leaving King’s Cross his train was rocked by an explosion. People were thrown from their seat screaming, he said, with smoke was pouring in and people trying to break the windows. Passengers were were stuck in the carriage for at least 30 minutes and the panic rose to levels of pandemonium, he said.
Mick O’Cruthers was near Russell Square when an explosion went off on a bus at around 9.20am. Mr O’Cruthers said he saw people coming off the bus covered in blood and glass and was told a bomb had exploded on the bottom deck. He said the people he spoke to had been upstairs.
Travis Banko, a 24-year old insurance broker, was travelling from Edgware Road to his work in Kensington on the Circle Line when a bomb exploded, leaving him covered in soot and cuts. He was in the front carriage when the train was rocked by a massive explosion. “All the windows blew out. People were screaming; it was black, we couldn’t see…We were sitting in darkness for five minutes trying not to inhale all the soot and smoke filing the carriage. After five minutes the doors were opened and we got out into the tunnel…The second carriage was ripped apart. There was carnage in the second carriage, people were under the train. I tried not to look.”
Simon Hughes, the Liberal Democrat MP from the London constituency of Bermondsey, said he saw 50 or 60 people emerging from Kings Cross Underground “covered in soot…they looked as though they had been in a coalmine. Some of them said they heard an explosion and were clearly in shock.”
David Scott, 43, a freelance IT consultant from Milton Keynes, was trying to get from Euston to Liverpool Street and had been told the Tube was down because on an electrical fault. “I am going to walk north and try and get out of the city,” he said.
Told to Dino Mahtani, Isolin Jorgensen and Pan Yuk
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