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Neighbours’ shock after body of man found following Maryland explosion

PUBLISHED: 17:24 02 November 2020 | UPDATED: 17:29 02 November 2020

A man's body was found beneath the rubble following an explosion in Waddington Street, Maryland, on Sunday (November 1). Picture: Submitted

A man's body was found beneath the rubble following an explosion in Waddington Street, Maryland, on Sunday (November 1). Picture: Submitted

Archant

Neighbours have spoken of their shock after the discovery of a body in a flat following an explosion.

The scene in Waddington Road. Picture: Yui Mok/PA WireThe scene in Waddington Road. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire

The body of a man was found beneath debris at the first floor flat in Waddington Street, Maryland, on Sunday, November 1.

Retired warehouseman Bernard Brown, who lives opposite, was getting breakfast when he heard a big explosion at 7.30am.

He looked out to see billowing smoke and the back of the flat blown out. He dashed across the courtyard and told the woman who lived in the home beneath the burning flat to call the fire brigade.

“It was a bit of a shock. After the explosion there were flames going up. When I heard it, I just thought, ‘Christ’,” Bernard said.

Neighbours described hearing a Neighbours described hearing a "big explosion" before seeing flames. Picture: Submitted

A man was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics after his body was found by firefighters during a search.

Pictures show the east-facing end of the flat completely blown out and a blue tent inside what would have been either the bedroom or living room.

Neighbours described the road filled with police, fire and ambulance crews. A cordon remained in place on Monday, November 2.

One neighbour said she saw the man who lives in the flat put the rubbish out before leaving at about 7.30am.

Bernard said the building was “fairly quiet” apart from difficulties in the past with drug addicts getting in.

On news of the death, he said: “That’s terrible.”

Three ground floor homes and two above were evacuated. Thirteen people fled the flames before the London Fire Brigade (LFB) arrived.

An LFB spokesperson said: “Firefighters were called at 7.51am. It is believed there was an explosion in a first floor flat which caused structural damage to the building.”

The brigade has handed the case over to the police, although fire crews had been assisting with the operation.

Workmen have been at the scene clearing debris and putting up scaffolding to cover the hollowed out home.

A Met Police spokesperson said that work was under way to locate the dead man’s next of kin and added that the incident is not being treated as terror-related.


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