Witnesses have told of the moment a building at Didcot Power Station apparently collapsed and the huge cloud of smoke spewed above Oxfordshire.
Adrian Redhead told Sky News it was a “massive explosion… a massive dust cloud came across”.
He said: “I looked out of the bedroom window and half the building was missing and rest is hanging on by a thread.”
David Cooke, who works at Thames Cryogenics in a building overlooking the power station, said: “Our building shook and as we looked out of the window, the end of the main turbine hall collapsed in a huge pile of dust.
“It totally obscured the towers and must have drifted across the roads and main rail line. What”s left looks a tangled mess. The dust was hanging over the area for five to 10 minutes.
“First thought was it didn”t looked planned, followed by the thought that people are going to have been hurt.”
Witness Andy Black said: “It looked like the world had ended with dust everywhere. You couldn”t see a thing.
“Then I spoke to a guy who said they were not due to blow it until Saturday and then we knew that it was a major problem.”
Blaine Morris Smith, who was walking his dog at the time, caught the explosion on film.
He told Sky News: “I was recording the dog which was why I had the phone out in the first place and I heard an explosion behind me and a few kids started screaming in the street.
“I turned round and half the building was imploding.
“It looked very much like a controlled explosion, which was why we were very shocked.
“Everyone started coming out their houses asking if anybody knew anything about it had they been notified, just in case someone missed it.
“The dust started rolling across so I decided to not record any more and made my way back up the hill away from explosion.”
One person is said to have had to drive through the black cloud of smoke with headlights on to see through it.