A CANVEY shop had to be evacuated after a power cable was ripped off the front of a nearby building causing an explosion.
The sign from chiropodists, Footstop, fell down and ripped off an attached power cable.
Emergency services were called at about 9pm, on Tuesday, to High Street, after the owner of a nearby shop heard it happen.
UK Power Networks was also called to help fix the damage.
Dee Seago, owner of InkSanity Tattoo Studio, which is two doors away from Footstop, said: “We were in our shop and heard a big thud and went to take a look and the sign had collapsed pulling down the overhead cables with it.
“The police arrived with the fire service about ten minutes later and in the meantime we stopped people from walking under the cables.”
Mrs Seago and other workers had to be evacuated from the shop as safety checks were carried out.
She said: “There was chaos when the police and fire service turned up, stopping traffic and evacuating us from our premises.
There was a smell of burning after it came down, but no sparks or flames.
“One of our cars was more or less below it and was narrowly missed. No-one was hurt.”
Owner of Footstop, Richard Waddington, 62, said it will cost him about £1,000 to fix the front of his shop.
He said: “I’m not sure how it happened; I think it was down to water getting into the front part of the shop, behind the sign, so it’s been rotting the timbers.
“It will cost me about a grand for all the repairs, but luckily it happened quite late, when no one was about.”
During the incident, police had to gain access to the shop next door, Rollin Stock, to restore electricity which is connected to the building.
Glen Capper, 49, owner of Rollin Stock, said: “The sign that fell down cut off all the electricity wires.
“It is all up and running again now.
“Luckily no-one was hurt. It could’ve been dangerous if someone was standing underneath.”
A spokeswoman for UK Power Networks said: “We were contacted by Essex fire service to attend a property in High Street, Canvey, after damage to the building had left electricity cables exposed.
“We were called at 9.30pm on Tuesday and had repaired the damage to the cables by 12.30am yesterday.”