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London skyscraper the Shard evacuated after smoke alert

  • 6-6-2014

About 900 people were evacuated from London skyscraper the Shard as firefighters investigated reports of smoke in the basement.

Seven fire engines and 50 firefighters were sent to the building - the tallest in western Europe - at 10:30 BST.

London Fire Brigade (LFB) said the Shard was evacuated as a precaution and they had found no evidence of a fire.

People were allowed back into the building at around 15:00 BST after the smoke had dissipated.

The Shard, which stands next to London Bridge station, is 310m (1,016ft) - 87 storeys - tall.

Glen Cave was in the building when the fire alarm went off.

"We had to walk to floors all the way down and it took about half an hour, but no dramas," he said.

"It was safe enough - they got us all out."

London Ambulance were also called to the scene, but no one was treated.

London Fire Brigade station manager Keeley Foster said crews because of "slight" smoke.

"As we arrived, the commander at the time decided that as a precaution the entire building was to be evacuated and crews quickly worked alongside building management to make sure that occurred," she said.

"Evacuating such large numbers of people can impede crews if there is a fire apparent but because it has been practised a number of times and we have worked alongside building management on a number of exercises, it was quite a quick and easy process."

Ms Foster added that firefighters were still investigating what caused the smoke and that it could have been down to a number of factors, including an electrical fault.

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Reproduced under licence from BBC News © 2014 BBC


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