Times Square huge explosion
A thunderous rumble was caused by several room fires near Times Square on Sunday night, sending people into a stampede in midtown Manhattan.
NYC tourists sent scrambling in Times Square after ‘huge explosion’ caused by manhole fires
Three manholes caught fire around 6:45 p.m. on W 43rd St between Seventh and Eighth Avenues, an area of the city packed with tourists at most hours, according to the FDNY.
There were no injuries as a result of the accident, according to initial reports from the NYPD and the FDNY.
Firefighters detected elevated levels of carbon monoxide near where the explosions occurred as they vented the area, an FDNY spokesperson told Fox News Digital.
Videos posted on social media showed people with shopping bags running down 48th Street.
“There is just a massive explosion,” Brad Paul, who was standing in the center of Times Square at the time of the explosion, told Fox News Digital. “It didn’t seem unusually close, but it was definitely a blast.”
Manhole fires in New York City doubled from fiscal year 2020 to 2021, jumping to 6,104 last year, according to a Mayor’s Department report released last year.
Manhole fires often occur when gas builds up underground and is ignited by a short circuit, causing an explosion through the path of least resistance, which is usually an opening, according to Fire Engingeering magazine.