London’s police have confirmed that an explosion on the underground was caused by an improvised explosive device and is being treated as a terrorist incident.
NHS England confirmed that the number of people being treated in hospital had risen to 22 after they earlier announced that 18 had been taken to hospital with injuries not thought to be serious of life-threatening.
Assistant Commission of the Metropolitan Police, Mark Rowley also confirmed that the injuries were mostly flash burns as a result of the explosion.
Rowley also confirmed that British Transport Police, the Metropolitan Counter-Terrorism Unit and MI5 were assisting with the investigation. CCTV, forensic evidence, and witnesses accounts are key to the investigation, he added.
Eyewitnesses earlier reported a flash and a fireball on a train at Parsons Green, a tube station in south-east London.
A commuter whose train had just left the Parsons Green station in southwest London told Associated Press that he saw several people injured, trampled as they fled the panic.
“There was a woman on the platform who said she had seen a bag, a flash and a bang, so obviously something had gone off,” he said. “Some people got pushed over and trampled on, I saw two women being treated by ambulance crews.”
Police and London’s Ambulance Service earlier confirmed that they were called to an incident at 8.20 a.m. local time (3.20 a.m. ET) and that paramedics were present. London Fire Service reported that they were on the scene within three minutes.
Images posted on Twitter showed a women being attended to by emergency services sitting on a pavement.
Photos are also circulating on Twitter of a white bucket that appears to have partially exploded but there is no official confirmation that this was linked to the incident at the station.
Police said they were aware of reports on social media and would release facts regarding the incident once they could be sure of their accuracy.
Transport for London said on Twitter that there was no service between Earls Court and Wimbledon on the District Line which runs through Parsons Green.