Transport and telecommunications struggle amid confusion in London

Thursday, July 7, 2005

Amid the confusion surrounding today's London blasts, officials have urged the public to avoid the city if possible to allow emergency services to operate more quickly.

All rail and underground stations remain closed, although efforts are being made to reopen them. Air links are now closed at Stansted, Heathrow, Gatwick and London City airports.

Those trying to contact friends and family via mobile have struggled as the largest mobile networks, Vodafone, O2 and Orange, have all suffered from full capacity on several occasions this morning meaning voice calls failed.

On the web, websites such as BBC, TfL and the G8 2005 website struggled for a short time at one point this morning under the strain of so many web users visiting them. The national grid has said that it has sustained no damage to the electricity network. On the Traffic England site run by the Highways Agency, London has been marked as a 'Closed area'.

Euston Station cordoned off

The Royal Mail is warning customers that mail collections and deliveries across the UK will be disrupted because of the incidents. Royal Mail vehicles will not be moving in or out of London, or between Royal Mail sites in central London for the remainder of today. At least 25 per cent of the UK's mail moves through London, even if its end destination is elsewhere. Disruption may therefore be felt throughout the UK. Royal Mail expects to issue further information later today.

Bus services in Zone 1 have resumed as of 16:00 BST.