British police say at least 19 people were killed and 50 wounded in a massive explosion Monday night outside a concert arena in Manchester, England.
The explosion occurred just moments after a concert by American pop star Ariana Grande. Authorities say they are treating the blast as a terrorist incident.
British Prime Minister Theresa May said her thoughts are with the victims of what she called an “appalling terrorist attack.”
Video from the concert showed thousands of concertgoers scrambling and screaming, trying to escape the building. The incident caused transport chaos, with traffic jams outside the venue and rail services being cancelled.
A number of audience members were seen walking around the building covered in blood. Many in the audience were young girls who are fans of Grande, a singer and actress who has appeared in TV and film roles. A spokesman for her record label said the singer is “okay.”
Manchester police say the explosion took place in what they call a public space outside the 21,000-seat arena.
While no one reported seeing any smoke, some say the ground near the blast was covered with nuts and bolts.
Abandoned shoes, phones and jackets were scattered throughout the arena.
“It was a huge explosion. You could feel it in your chest. It was chaotic. Everybody was running and screaming just trying to get out,” a concertgoer told Reuters.
Worried parents who brought their children to the show crowded the streets outside the building. A nearby hotel opened its doors to the kids looking for their mothers and fathers.
Cab drivers turned off their meters and offered to drive people from the ill-fated concert to wherever they want to go.
Britain’s terrorism alert level is at “severe,” the second highest on the scale. Terrorism officials are meeting in London.
Grande’s “Dangerous Woman Tour” is to support her third studio album, Dangerous Woman. The tour began on February 3 in Phoenix, Arizona. From Manchester, the tour is to move through Europe, including Belgium, Poland, Germany, Switzerland and France, through the summer with stops in Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Costa Rica, Mexico and on to Japan, Thailand, the Philippines, New Zealand and Australia.