Police have confirmed that 19 people are dead following a loud blast at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England. The explosion (as of 8:15 p.m. EST, 1:15 a.m. GMT) is being treated "as a terrorist incident."
Latest statement on incident at Manchester Arena pic.twitter.com/BEpLOan3dY— G M Police (@gmpolice) May 23, 2017
"Emergency services are currently responding to reports of an explosion, the Greater Manchester police force's Twitter account read in an earlier statement, asking local residents to "avoid the area as first responders work at the scene." The BBC reports that some victims were treated for ""shrapnel-like injuries."
It's not yet known exactly what caused the blast(s). Ivo Delgado, who attended the show, told NBC News he heard a loud bang. "People started screaming and going to the other side of the arena," he said, and added that he saw at least one person with blood on their face. "A huge bomb-like bang went off that hugely panicked everyone and we were all trying to flee the arena," concertgoer Majid Khan told Britain's Press Association. "It was one bang and essentially everyone from the other side of the arena where the bang was heard from suddenly came running towards us as they were trying to exit."
"There was a loud bang at the end of the concert," Erin McDougle, 20, told the Guardian. "The lights were already on so we knew it wasn't part of the show. At first we thought it was a bomb. There was a lot of smoke. People started running out. When we got outside the arena there were dozens of police vans and quite a few ambulances."
A statement from the Manchester Arena released at 8:30 p.m. EST, however, says that the explosion took place "outside the venue in a public space," as concertgoers were leaving the show. Attendees have begun posting videos to Twitter of chaos in and around Manchester Arena following the explosive sound.
EXPLOSION AT MANCHESTER ARENA AND EVERYONE RAN OUT SO SCARY???? pic.twitter.com/pJbUBoELtE— ?? (@hannawwh) May 22, 2017
This post will be updated with further information as it becomes available.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.