Potters Bar bus depot fire

A fire that engulfed six buses at a Hertfordshire town centre transport depot has been linked to an electric bus catching fire while charging.

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS) arrived in the afternoon on Sunday 22 May, where a local resident described the scene, saying: "I just heard an unbelievable noise that sounded like a jet and when I looked out my window, one of the buses exploded in a ball of flames."

The smoke from the blaze was so heavy that it was reportedly seen as far away as St Albans, 11 miles away.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Andy Hopcraft said: "The first fire engine was on the scene within four minutes, where four buses were well alight.

"Neighbouring properties were quickly evacuated and the surrounding buildings and other buses were protected from fire.

"At the height of the fire, eight engines were in attendance, and a total of six buses were on fire – two electric-hybrid, and four diesel-powered.

"Thanks to the efforts of the firefighters involved, the fire was contained to six buses and did not spread to cause further damage to other buildings or vehicles."

A spokesman for Metroline, which owns the vehicles, said: "We can confirm that all personnel were successfully evacuated and that there were no injuries.”

Transport for London (TfL) has removed 108 London buses from service following the blaze, with a knock-on effect disrupting nine local bus routes.

HFRS have confirmed that a joint fire and police investigation into the blaze is taking place to establish the exact cause and origin of the fire.

Photo credit: BBC News