New York Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted after his news conference:
Once again, we have been shown what our first responders are capable of under extraordinarily difficult circumstances. #eastharlemexplosion
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Fine and dry for many
His death sparked tributes online and #BeMoreMartyn trended - now a play is celebrating the life of Manchester attack victim Martyn Hett.
Many affected were seen burying their faces in their hands and people flooded from the room in tears.