Chris Pawley was holidaying with his partner Corey Lorde in the Spanish city when a van ploughed into pedestrians on the famed Las Ramblas walkaway killing 13 people on Thursday. A fourteenth victim died early on Friday after a similar incident in Cambrils.
Speaking from Barcelona, Pawley told the Manchester Evening News: “We were in the area after the incident. We have just come back to the hotel, as we were caught up in the arena attack – can’t believe it.
“There was police everywhere and ambulances, the shops started putting the shutters down.”
Writing on Facebook, he said: “Just to let everyone know me and Corey are OK, getting a lot of messages. It’s crazy here, the shops have put all their shutters down and the army is out but hope everyone is OK who’s been injured!”
Of the attack in Manchester in May in which 22 people lost their lives, Pawley recalled he had just exited the arena when the bomb went off. He added: “We were so, so lucky. So lucky we managed to escape unhurt.”
Melbourne resident Julia Monaco claims she also survived the Barcelona incident – having been previously caught up in the London Bridge terror attack and the stabbing of a police officer outside Notre Dame in Paris.
She told Australian radio station 3AW: “All of a sudden we were locked in the shop and confusion started to sprinkle among the people.
“The next second we knew we were literally running for our lives to the very back of the store where we were told to get on the ground away from the windows and lay as flat as possible.”
She tweeted: “Genuinely terrifying experience. One minute I’m shopping for T-shirts, the next I’m running away to get away from the windows.”