A man was killed and 15 other people were taken to hospital after a horrific pile-up involving two buses and a car.
Around 60 firefighters were involved in the dramatic rescue operation, pulling casualties from the wreckage of the single-decker buses involved in the crash late last night.
Dramatic images from the scene in Orpington, south east London, show debris scattered across the street, and both buses smashed-up by the side of the road.
A man, who police said was the driver of the car, was arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He remains in custody.
The wrecked buses were still at the scene this morning, and local residents said that a house had also been damaged in the mayhem.
Eye-witness Tariq Sheikh, 41, who lives in a flat overlooking the scene, said: “I heard a continuous wailing of sirens at around 10.30pm, and then just saw fire engines everywhere.
“The R11 bus crashed into the front wall of a house at the bottom of Tower Road, and then the other bus has swerved to the other side of the road.
“It’s all a bit graphic. Everything is strewn everywhere. There’s bits of cars, bits of buses.
“Looking at it now, there’s two heavy duty recovery vehicles that are about to lift the buses out of the gardens. They are taking evidence from one of the buses as part of their clear up.
“There’s a lot of gossip on an Oprington community Facebook page, saying the bus driver had been killed.
“It’s all cordoned off. I was told I can’t go and see my parents, who live down the road.
“I thought it was maybe a Halloween incident or something random like that. I was surprised to hear that wailing of sirens.”
Scotland Yard confirmed that one man had died, and said that three others sustained “serious injuries”.
A Met spokesman said: “Police were called to Sevenoaks Road in Orpington at 10.12pm on Thursday following a report of a road traffic collision.
“Officers, London Fire Brigade and London Ambulance Service all attended to a collision between two London buses and one car.
“One person was pronounced dead at the scene. Next of kin have been informed.
“Paramedics also treated 15 casualties, three of whom are suffering from serious injuries. The remaining have minor injuries.
“A man, the driver of the car, has been arrested on suspicion of death by dangerous driving, he is currently in police custody.”
Six fire engines, two rescue units and around 60 firefighters attended the horror crash.
Graham Ellis, Assistant Commissioner of the London Fire Brigade, said: “Firefighters rescued several casualties from the buses and immediately undertook First Aid, being joined by colleagues from London Ambulance Service.
“Firefighters also made the vehicles and surrounding area safe.”
A London Ambulance Service spokesperson added: “We were called at 10.07pm yesterday to reports of a road traffic collision on Sevenoaks Road, Orpington.
“We dispatched a number of resources to the scene including ten ambulance crews, two incident response officers and our Hazards Area Response Team (HART). We also dispatched London’s Air Ambulance by car.
“We treated 15 patients and took them to hospital. Despite the best efforts of our medics, a person sadly died at the scene.”
Road closures remain in place, and drivers are being encouraged to seek alternative routes.