Investigation launched into Edinburgh substation explosions which terrified locals

A series of explosions near the Scottish Parliament which sent terrified residents fleeing into the streets was caused by a "highly unusual" substation blaze.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 3:34 pm
The blaze took hold near Holyrood Road in Edinburgh
The blaze took hold near Holyrood Road in Edinburgh

Residents and workers in the Holyrood area of Edinburgh reported four or five "loud bangs" on Thursday and fled the scene.

The drama unfolded yesterday afternoon as the fire took hold in a courtyard off Holyrood Road sending thick smoke billowing over the city centre.

Emergency crews evacuated students in nearby flats as well as staff at Moray House and a Tesco. There were no reported injuries.

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The blaze took hold near Holyrood Road in Edinburgh

Scottish Power have launched an investigation after the electricity substation in caught fire.

A ScottishPower spokeswoman said: "This was a highly unusual incident, and we apologise for any upset or inconvenience caused.

"We are carrying out a full investigation to find out what caused this incident.”

Ailith Stewart, 17, told the Evening News she was "panicking" when the explosions began. "They were so loud the windows were shaking and the floor shook," she said.

Scottish Power is investigating how the electrical substation caught fire.

Joiner Sean Reynolds, 22, added: "I'm gutted. I parked my car next to it and am just waiting to find out the damage."

Harpreet Kaur, 17, was working at City Bank when she first noticed black smoke. She called the fire brigade before hearing 'four or five' loud bangs and running for cover.She said: "I walked out of work and saw the black smoke. I rang the fire brigade as I thought someone could be hurt."It looked like a shed that had set on fire. There were four or five loud bangs and everyone in the area ran away, there were a few hundred people around."The emergency services arrived shortly after that."

Thick black smoke was seen billowing over the city.
Thousands of nearby workers and residents were evacuated.