Rackheath blast - village in chaos

Chaos consumed Rackheath yesterday in the aftermath of the shocking explosion on Wednesday night.

The main road running along Rackheath Industrial Estate, Green Lane West, was soon completely over-run by parked cars, making a quagmire of roadside banks and also taking over the village hall car park and part of its playing field. It has been a hectic time for villagers, who have been left shaken by the incident but relieved there weren't worse consequences.

One resident, John Tink, said the blast didn't shake his house too violently but the huge sound was a big shock. 'We were sat watching television and just heard a big bang,' he said. 'We thought it was a road accident at first and went straight outside like most of the neighbours.

'There was no accident so we thought it must have been an explosion and we are under the flightpath for Norwich Airport so we looked up in the air, but couldn't see anything. So thirdly we thought maybe it was an explosion at the airport.

'We checked around the house because it had shaken a little but nothing was broken.'

Neighbour Martin Conway added: 'It was a terrible explosion, it sounded really loud. I thought it was a lorry going into the wall outside my house at first. We all went outside to see what was going on but couldn't see what it was. Today I've had a day off and I went out for a bit and saw how busy the road is, it's manic.'

Janet Mall added that she could understand all the business users clogging up the road however, saying: 'If it was happening like this every day then I possibly would be annoyed, but I can understand that people need to get into work.'