Many people trapped after crane collapses on houses in east London

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A crane has collapsed on to two terraced houses in east London, trapping people inside, the fire service has said.

According to Guardian, the London fire brigade said it was conducting a complex rescue operation to search properties after the 20-metre-high crane fell in Bow at 2.39pm on Wednesday.

London ambulance service said a number of crews and a team of specialist paramedics who work in hazardous environments were responding to the incident on Gale Street. The Metropolitan police said they had received reports of four people sustaining injuries.

A witness, who lives in a nearby block of flats on Watts Grove, said she saw the crane collapse while working from home. Bridget Teirney, in her 30s, said: “I was sitting at my computer facing out as it happened. It made a huge loud noise and a big plume of dust came up.”

She said she saw the crane fall through the top storey of a building site before it collapsed on to the homes, trapping two men including the crane’s driver.

According to Teirney, emergency services arrived within five minutes and gave the driver a rope to climb down from the crane’s cabin, while the other man was pinned under the boom.

“It was absolutely crazy, I rushed straight out on to the street,” said Teirney, who along with other residents in the neighbouring flats was evacuated.

The London fire brigade assistant commissioner Graham Ellis said: “A 20-metre crane has collapsed on to a block of flats under development and into two terraced houses on Compton Close.

“Our urban search and rescue crews are undertaking a complex rescue operation and using specialist equipment to search the properties. This is a multi-agency response and is likely to be a protracted incident. I would ask people to avoid the area.”

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