UEA graduate ran for his life after getting caught in Barcelona terror attack
One minute he was enjoying a coffee on a summer's afternoon in Barcelona, the next he was hiding inside a locked restaurant as terror swept across the city.
One minute he was enjoying a coffee on a summer’s afternoon in Barcelona, the next he was hiding inside a locked restaurant as terror swept across the city.
University of East Anglia graduate Eneko De Marcos was one of thousands of people fearing for his life after a terrorist drove a van into crowds through Las Ramblas. At least 13 people were killed in the attack with dozens more injured.
The 26-year-old, who used to work at Swinton Insurance in Norwich, was spending the evening with a friend at a restaurant when they suddenly heard a loud bang.
“We heard a noise but didn’t know if it was a bomb or why people were running but it was chaos,” he said. “People were running and screaming. At that point your instincts kick in and I rushed inside the restaurant and all that was going through my head was if this was like Borough Market then we need to get inside and close this down.”
Mr De Marcos spent the next three and a half hours locked inside waiting on police to confirm it was safe. But when he finally got out of the restaurant the terror was not over.
“Once I got to cordoned off police area there was another noise and then police started rushing in and the crowd went mad and another stampede occurred,” he said. “I saw people rushing and running at me and I just ran. It was a life and death scenario and I didn’t know what was happening so I legged it.”
With the area closed off as the manhunt begun it took the English teacher two hours to get back to his apartment which was a seven minute walk from the scene and he described that period of time as “very nerve racking”.
“People on the street were very agitated and there was a negative electric feeling in the atmosphere, everyone was really nervous,” he said. “You didn’t know who to look out for or what to do.”
Spain is currently in national mourning following the attack in Barcelona and a second in Cambrils which claimed the life of one woman.
Mr De Marcos said people are continuing to go about their usual business but he was just glad to be safe.
“It was quite hard to process that this had happened but now you either let it ruin your life and you avoid doing the things you want to do or you have to continue and live the way you want to live.”