Oxford residents witnessed an “explosion” (Image: Knocker/Twitter)
A massive “explosion” was spotted illuminating the skies in Oxford on Monday evening after a lightning bolt struck a gas tank.
Police confirmed they remain on the scene putting out the massive fire caused after the lightning strike ignited the biogas.
Locals in Oxford took to social media to share photographs and videos of the fireball lighting up the night sky at around 7:20pm this evening.
Emergency services were seen rushing to the scene, near Yarnton, as some locals temporarily lost power.
One social media user wrote in amazement: “The sky was glowing for about 2 minutes then it just disappeared. Like an explosion on the horizon.”
A Met Office yellow weather alert is in place over the city, warning residents of dangerous thunderstorms and downpours.
Express.co.uk has contacted Thames Valley Police, Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue service as well as the Met Office.
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Oxford: Explosion appears to light up the sky
21 mins ago21:29 Isabella Marsans
Gas containers struck by lightning causing massive fire
Severn Trent Green Power have confirmed that the “explosion” seen earlier this evening was caused by a lightening bolt striking a digester tank in a facility near Yarnton.
The incident occured around 7:20pm Monday evening.
u25b6ufe0f UPDATE: Severn Trent Green Power confirm that at around 19:20 this evening, a digester tank at its Cassington AD facility near Yarnton, Oxfordshire, was struck by lightning resulting in the biogas within that tank igniting.
u2014 BBC Radio Oxford (@BBCOxford) October 2, 2023
24 mins ago21:26 Isabella Marsans
Police currently at the scene of the fire – ‘believed to be caused by lightning’
Thames Valley Police have confirmed that they are at the scene of the fire.
They added that it is believed the incident was caused by a lightening strike.
They took to X, formerly known as Twitter, and said: “Our officers are currently at the scene of a fire at a waste plant near Yarnton, Oxfordshire.
“It is believed that lightning struck gas containers at the site during bad weather this evening, causing a large fire.”
Our officers are currently at the scene of a fire at a waste plant near Yarnton, Oxfordshire.
It is believed that lightning struck gas containers at the site during bad weather this evening, causing a large fire. pic.twitter.com/Xy50berg1T
u2014 TVP_WestOxon (@TVP_WestOxon) October 2, 2023
33 mins ago21:17 Isabella Marsans
Residents report seeing ‘flames in the distance’
A social media user has reported seeing flames amid the suspected lightning strike.
Mahmet Ciftci posted on X: “Just saw something here in Kidlington that looked like an explosion in the distance.
“We heard a rumble like thunder and saw flames in the distance. The horizon went orange for a while.”
The true cause behind the explosion remains unconfirmed.
39 mins ago21:11 Isabella Marsans
Police and firefighters ‘rushed to scene’
One eyewitness said they saw emergency services rush to the scene after the blast.
Taking to X, formerly Twitter, they wrote: “I don’t know what it was but it was massive. There were lots of fire brigade and police cars minutes later going through A40.”
45 mins ago21:05 Isabella Marsans
Resident says they were left without power all evening after ‘deafening’ blast
Ana Cavey, who lives in Somerton, about 15 miles north of Oxford, said a “deafening” lightening strike rocked her town, leaving her without power all evening.
She told Sky News: “We’ve had the most unbelievable thunder and lightning storm ever… it came out of nowhere and the noise was incredible.
“A lightning strike hit right outside my house and it was deafening. It was terrifying. Awful.
“Our power has just come back on but we’ve been without power all evening until now.”
50 mins ago21:00 Isabella Marsans
Local says ‘sky was pulsating’ as the strange ‘explosion’ rocks city
One resident took to social media to describe the terrifying ordeal.
They wrote on X, formerly Twitter: “So strange, sky was pulsating.”
Meanwhile another user, Joshua Bull, said: “Definitely some kind of explosion – sounds like it’s out near Yarnton?
“Must have been huge, I’m in Marston and thought it was a car crashing outside my flat.”
54 mins ago20:56 Isabella Marsans
The ‘explosion’ comes as thunderstorms batter the nation
The Met Office has issued urgent thunderstorm warnings covering large parts of England.
The warning, which is already in place and is set to last until 2am Tuesday morning, urges people to be vigilant as there is a risk of lethal hail, damage to buildings and power cuts.
Oxford has been affected by thunderstorms this evening, as many residents have reported lighting strikes in the area.
One witness told Sky News: “I’m guessing it’s a fire caused by the lightning storm that passed over.”
1 hour ago20:49 Isabella Marsans
Did you see the explosion?
Did you see the explosion? Please get in touch! Email [email protected]
1 hour ago20:34 Isabella Marsans
Social media user spots the fireball while traveling on A34
One X user, formerly Twitter, spotted the massive ball of flame from while travelling on the A34.
They shared the shocking scene on X.
1 hour ago20:24 Isabella Marsans
More footage emerges from the incident
Social media users have shared footage from the incident.
It is still unknown what caused the blast.
2 hours ago20:12 Isabella Marsans
Some locals reported the sky turned red in a terrifying moment
Snaps from the scene reveal the sky turning an unnatural colour in the terrifying incident.
Anybody else in Oxford just see that fireball
?? Loud explosion and then the sky just did this ?? ( keep in mind itu2019s supposed to be dark ) pic.twitter.com/Yzj693eKF2
u2014 Stuart Hosking (@Stuartbigbro2) October 2, 2023
2 hours ago20:08 Isabella Marsans
Shocking footage taken of the incident
X user, formerly known as Twitter, captured the blast from near Wolvercote Cemetery.
The local speculated the incident must have been between Eynsham and Kidlington Airport.
2 hours ago20:06 Isabella Marsans
Some residents say they temporarily lost power
Following the fireball, some X users, formerly Twitter, reported they lost power.
One wrote: “Was not sure if a substation had been hit at first as we lost power temporarily.”
2 hours ago20:04 Isabella Marsans
Residents report “explosion” North-West of Oxford
Some social media users said they “heard it clearly”, while others shared shocking images of the night sky illuminated by the unknown bang.
One X user, formerly known as Twitter, wrote: “Did anyone just see the skies over Oxford a minute ago? Don’t think I’ve seen orange lightning before!”
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