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Helicopter crash in central London, 2 dead

London, Jan 16 (): Scotland Yard said two people have been confirmed dead, nine people have been injured and one is critically ill after a helicopter hit a crane on top of St George’s Tower by the river Thames that crashed into a street during rush hour, at about 08:00 GMT in central London on Wednesday.

Police have said the helicopter crashed into a crane due to misty conditions. London City Airport said flights had been disrupted on Wednesday due to low visibility.

The helicopter crashed into Wandsworth Road during rush hour hitting various vehicles and bursting into flames and there were also fires in nearby buildings. The side of a building on one side of the street was also damaged by the flames.

Commuters have described hearing a loud explosion and seeing the helicopter and cars in flames. Aviation fuel and burning wreckage covered the road and witnesses reported hearing people screaming.

Sixty fire-fighters rushed to the spot, near Wandsworth Road in South Lambeth. London Fire Brigade station manager Bruce Grain said fire-fighters arrived at the scene in four minutes. Doctors said one of the dead was in the helicopter and the other on the ground.

The A202 in Vauxhall was shut southbound between Vauxhall Cross and the A3212 at Millbank junction. Other crowdy stretches of road were the A202 Harleyford Road from A203 South Lambeth Road and the A203 South Lambeth Road.

Vauxhall rail, Tube and bus stations are all closed to passengers. Trains were running through the station but not picking up or dropping off passengers.

Transport for London said the buses operating in Vauxhall area were subject to diversion and delays due to the incident. People were instructed to avoid the area and take alternative routes.

The Ministry of Defence said the helicopter was not a military aircraft and police said the incident was not terror-related.

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