PHOTO: From the book, The History of the London Fire Department: Heroes, Helmets and Hoses.

PHOTO: From the book, The History of the London Fire Department: Heroes, Helmets and Hoses.

While doing some repair work in this west London neighbourhood, a backhoe operator accidentally destroyed a gas line regulator. The increased pressure turned furnaces and gas stoves in neighbouring homes into bombs. Ten houses exploded and burned while an additional 40 were damaged. 3,000 homes were evacuated. Miraculously, there were no fatalities.