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On This Day… A Flood Wave Of Beer!

Written by: George Chittenden : 09 Jun 2019

It was on this day, 17th Oct, back in 1814 when an industrial accident in a London brewery led to more than 320,000 gallons of beer flooding into the streets. It created a beer tsunami around Tottenham Court Road which killed at least eight people. The accident occurred in London’s Horse Shoe Brewery when one of the iron rings around a tank snapped, and then the tank ruptured.

The Horse Shoe Brewery in 1830

The Horse Shoe Brewery in 1830

The force of the blast damaged several other tanks and their contents joined the flood. The brewery was located at the corner of Great Russell Street and Tottenham Court Road in an area of London that was densely populated.

The wave that was supposedly fifteen-foot-high eventually flooded into the basements of two houses, causing them to collapse. Hundreds of people attempting to scoop up the beer in whatever containers they could, whilst others were just drinking it straight from the street.

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