Diners had to flee a fire caused by Christmas decorations at a Latin American restaurant in London’s West End on Friday night.
Video footage of the blaze showed people rushing to escape MNKY HSE in Dover Street, Mayfair after the flames quickly spread. Two people were treated for their injuries by paramedics.
The London Fire Brigade said it attended the incident after being called to a fire in the basement of the building at 9.40pm and had it under control in less than half an hour.
The flames reportedly spread quickly — “within seven seconds,” according to one of the guests — sending people running out of the building.
Footage posted on social media showed the fire raging as revelers escaped, with some people still holding their drinks and others ducking under the fire to get to a door as a ceiling decoration caught fire.
Some could be seen falling over, while others screamed and yelled at other guests to “go”.
A spokesperson for the London Fire Service said: “Firefighters were called to a fire at a restaurant on Dover Street in Mayfair.
“Christmas decorations in the building were on fire and extinguished before firefighters arrived. About 300 people were evacuated by personnel on site and crews conducted a systematic search of the property to ensure no one was inside on arrival.
“A man and a woman were treated at the scene by paramedics in London. Dover Street was closed off as crews worked to make the scene safe.
“The brigade was called at 9:40 am and the incident was over for the firefighters at 10:18 pm. Five fire engines and approximately 35 firefighters from Soho, Lambeth, Kensington and Chelsea fire stations were on scene.”
They added that the cause of the fire is still being investigated and thermal imaging was used to make sure everything was okay once the fire was extinguished.
There were about 300 people in the restaurant at the time and the incident happened during the busiest time of the year. Guests were evacuated by security personnel.
Despite the severity of the fire, social media users commented on the calm way people left the restaurant. One person highlighted how people just “casually walked away” and another asked, “Why do they look so calm?”
Another tweeted, “Amazing how no one left their drinks.”