London emergency: ‘Major gas leak’ sparks evacuation of nursery – rush hour chaos

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Mohammad Rakib (@Mohammad12akib) wrote on Twitter: “Getting reports of a Major Gas leak. The Highway (A12) is closed all the way down to Cannon Street Road. Waitrose Wapping has closed and a local nursery has been told to evacuate. Please look for alternative routes home. Expect extra traffic displacement around Tower Hamlets.

Twitter user Pascal “don’t burn stuff” Hartig (@passy) wrote: “Good chunk of my neighbourhood in Wapping evacuated because of a fossil gas leak.

“The fact that we’re still pumping this directly into people’s flats is madness.”

Tower Hamlets Police said a gas leak has closed East Smithfield at the junction with The Highway. 

Cadent Gas, which describes itself on Twitter as the “UK’s largest gas distribution network”, is on the scene dealing with the incident.

The police force tweeted: “East Smithfield jw The Highway CLOSED due to a gas leak.

“@CadentGasLtd are on scene dealing. Please bare with us.”

Evacuated local residents have replied to the tweet from Tower Hamlets to ask if it is safe for them to return to their properties.

Yana (@yanakdn) tweeted: “Could you please let us know when is it safe to go back? Thank you.”

A map tweeted by the Jambuster traffic account showed huge congestion along a huge stretch of the A13 Commercial Road and surrounding areas.

The service wrote: A13 Commercial Road (E1) (all directions) at the junction of Cannon Street Road.

“Traffic congestion in the area due to closure at East Smithfield following a gas leak.

“Use alternative route.”

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