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Fire near London Bridge train station forces evacuations

Aug. 17 (UPI) -- A fire under the railway arches at London's Union Street near the London Bridge has forced the line to be shut down and passengers evacuated Wednesday morning, fire officials said.

The London Fire Brigade reported that "a number of vehicles" were "alight" as crews investigated smoke coming from a platform at the London Bridge Underground Station. There were no reports of injuries.

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"The blaze was producing heavy smoke and those living or working in the local area were advised to keep their windows and doors closed," station commander Wayne Johnson said in a statement. "Trains to and from London Bridge are affected and several buildings were evacuated."

The brigade said the cause of the fire remained under investigation. Officials said 10 fire engines and some 70 firefighters responded to the scene.

Authorities closed Southwark Street from Southwark Bridge Road and Lavington Street while the fire continued to burn.

The Southeastern Railway reported the fire caused major disruptions throughout the system.

"A fire next to the track between London Waterloo East and London Bridge means all lines are blocked," the railway said on its website. "Train services running to and from these stations may be canceled or revised.

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"Following the earlier disruption caused by the signaling fault, there is now severe disruption across all of our Metro services and also our mainline services between London and Tonbridge, Hastings and Ashford."

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