Piccadilly Theatre: four taken to hospital after ceiling collapses on audience during the show
7 November 2019, 09:31 | Updated: 7 November 2019, 10:00
Four people have been taken to hospital after the incident at a performance of Death of A Salesman in London's West End
Piccadilly Theatre was evacuated last night (6 November) after a part of the ceiling collapsed on the audience during a performance of Death of A Salesman.
Emergency services were called to the theatre, which is situated in London's West End, at around 8PM.
Three men and two women were treated by paramedics at the scene for cuts and bruises from falling debris, London Ambulance Service confirmed, adding: "Four of them were then taken to hospital and one was discharged after treatment."
Next to #picadillytheatre speaking to people who were inside the theatre when it collapsed. 'just after the production started there was dripping from the roof and the staff announced an evacuation, we can't stop shaking'. Hope everyone is ok. pic.twitter.com/IF9Avmd7q7— Zara Janjua (@TVZaraJ) November 6, 2019
London Fire Brigade said: "Firefighters are attending the Piccadilly theatre where a section of plaster has fallen from the ceiling during a performance. Around 1,100 people evacuated the theatre before we arrived."
And The Met Police tweeted: “Everyone is out of the theatre. A few people have suffered minor injuries. Road closures in place. Motorists advised to use alternative routes.”
Witnesses described hearing an increasingly loud 'dripping' sound followed by a crashing and screams.
Martin George, 41, who was sitting in the Grand Circle, said, according to the Guardian: "About 10 minutes into the performance you could hear this slight dripping sound in the [grand] circle and people were looking around, wondering what was happening, but the play carried on.
"As the minutes passed, the dripping became more frequent and it sounded like more water was coming through the ceiling, causing a few people to get up and move.
"The sound eventually got so loud that we stood up and started to leave, as we were wondering what was going to happen.
Small section of ceiling collapses at London’s Piccadilly theatre. Show halted and theatre evacuated. No one seriously hurt. pic.twitter.com/UAhZxikjyS— Ben Ando (@BenAndo) November 6, 2019
"Then, as we stood up, this huge chunk of ceiling, about three to four metres across, crashed down. There were people screaming at that point and everyone got up and streamed down the stairs."
Wendell Pierce , who is playing Willy Loman in the show, told the audience afterwards: “I did not mean for it to go like this. We are so honoured that you came tonight. We are so sorry that unfortunately this happened.”