THOUSANDS of East End residents are being affected by a huge internet outage after a cable in Bridgeton exploded.

Shops have been forced to close or only accept cash because card machines have been made useless by the outage. 

The Post Office in Duke Street has shut today and it is understood a number of outlets at the nearby Forge Retail Park have closed or are only taking cash.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon Covid statement: Lifting of lockdown will be 'slow'

Engineers are on the scene to combat the problem, which was caused after an underground cable exploded, "blasting" the nearby digital network which serves thousands of homes. 

A spokeswoman for Openreach said: "An emergency response unit is on its way to the Gallowgate to provide internet access for urgent use while repairs are carried out."

Andy Baillie, a patch manager for the firm, said: "This was like a hand grenade going off underground, and the damage to one of our main East End cable routes is extensive.

“We’ll be working round the clock to get everyone back online as fast as we can, but these repairs are complex and it’s going to take time.

READ MORE: Police launch hunt for man in connection with Queen's Park incident

“We’re sorry for the disruption and thank residents for their patience and understanding while we work on the fix.”

Internet access cut out for residents in Dennistoun and Bridgeton at around 11pm last night. 

It is not clear when access will be restored but local reports that it could take as long as nine days were dismissed by Openreach.