After ‘EastEnders’ aired some dramatic scenes showing the residents of Walford lifting a London bus to free a trapped Martin Fowler, some viewers were quick to question how realistic it was.
However, they have been silenced, after it was pointed out how it actually mirrored a real-life drama that happened in Walthamstow two years ago.
During Tuesday (25 January) night’s episode of the BBC soap, fans saw Martin trapped under the double decker, after the vehicle ploughed through the market and crashed into a bridge.
Many characters and extras then gathered together to lift the huge off the ground so he could be freed, which seemed implausible to many people at home.
It then emerged the scenes were similar to events in London in 2015, when a 100 passers-by came together to free a trapped unicyclist, who had been pinned under a bus.
Some social media users shared the footage on Twitter, which showed how Antony Shields was saved after being struck by the bus.
Eye witness Kyra Sam had previously told the Evening Standard: “I’m really amazed at the strength of Walthamstow - no one hesitated to push the bus off, I was in shock.
The soap’s director later explained the cast actually lifted the bus themselves while filming the episode.
Toby Frow told Digital Spy: “What we initially said to them was when the bus is lifted by the crane, we need it to look like you’re lifting it so can you put your backs into at least swaying it left to right.
“So action… let’s do the first shot without the crane. And the bus did move. It came an inch off the ground. It was pretty remarkable. It was a symbol of how much commitment everyone threw into the entire thing. They gave everything they had for the entire shoot and threw themselves into it.”
‘EastEnders’ faced criticism from some fans over the bus crash when it aired on Tuesday, claiming it too closely mirrored the recent Berlin terror attacks, which saw a lorry deliberately driven into a Christmas marker, killing 12 people.
A spokesperson for the show later issued a statement, explaining the scenes were not devised with the tragic events in Berlin in mind.
“’EastEnders’ is a fictional drama and the crash in tonight’s episode was not based on any real-life event,” they said. “We are always mindful of the content within our episodes.”
While Martin has been freed from the wreckage, he is not out of the danger zone yet, as dialogue has hinted we’ll be saying goodbye to at least one character as a result of the accident.
It also looks like Whitney Carter could still be stuck under the bus, after Queen Vic landlord Mick made a horrifying discovery at the end of Tuesday’s episode.
EastEnders’ disaster week continues on Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One.
Catch up on all the latest soap news and spoilers here.