Loud Manhole Explosion Sends Panicked Crowds Scrambling in Times Square

Times Square
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The explosion, which happened at 6:45 p.m. Sunday, was caused by an underground fire. There were no reported injuries.

A manhole explosion caused by an underground fire sent panicked crowds fleeing Sunday evening in New York's Times Square.

The explosion happened at exactly 6:45 p.m., when the streets were crammed with Broadway fans streaming into theaters for the evening performances.

People ran for their lives in all directions after a loud boom shook the crossroads of the world. Video taken from above shows tourists pouring off the red steps of the TKTS booth in the middle of Times Square.

The opening night of the show "Birthday Candles” starring Deborah Messing was underway when the loud bang shook nerves. George Stephanopoulos’ wife, actress Ali Wentworth, was there.

“They heard the explosion go off. The entire theater was in panic. They swarmed the lobby — people pinned against the walls. They also thought there was a shooter outside at the same time, so it’s a real sign of the times,” Stephanopoulos said on “Good Morning America.”

Messing posed with several first responders who investigated the explosion.

Fortunately, there were no reported injuries.

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