A homemade bomb exploded on a packed commuter train in London, injuring at least 22 people. The explosion occurred at the Parsons Green tube station on London’s District Line. Eyewitnesses report seeing the train car engulfed with flames, hearing a loud whoosh, and seeing flames racing down the train. Early reports indicate that at least one woman was burned from head to toe, with dozens of passengers requiring hospitalization for their injuries.
Videos circulating on the Internet showed remnants of burning material within the train car. Police believe that the person responsible for planting the bomb fled the scene. Some witnesses also reported that people at the station took selfies amidst the chaos.
This attack is at least the fourth terrorist attack to strike London this year, marking the most terrorist attacks to strike the city since 1992. That year saw over three dozens terrorist incidents, part of a stretch of attacks by the Provisional Irish Republican Army from 1991-93 that included a mortar attack on the Prime Minister’s office and residence at 10 Downing Street.
Authorities believe that the bomb used in this most recent explosion was set off by a timer and, if it had exploded as intended, would have been responsible for dozens of deaths. As it was, the stampede of people away from the train in today’s attacks may have been responsible for as many injuries as the bomb itself.