An deadly explosion at a major gas pipeline hub in Austria today caused the UK's natural gas prices to spike.
The Beaumgarten site in Austria pumps gas throughout Europe from Russia.
Gas Connect Austria, the operator, said the site had been shut down, and the fire brigade said one person had been killed and 18 injured.
In the UK, gas for immediate delivery rose 40 per cent to 95p per therm, a high not seen since 2013.
Colder temperatures in the UK have caused demand for gas to rise.
The situation in the UK was made worse by the fact that the major Forties pipeline in the North Sea was shut down yesterday due to a crack in a pipe, causing Brent crude oil prices to jump to a two-year high.
Meanwhile, Italy, which relies heavily on the pipeline, declared a state of emergency as Italian wholesale day-ahead prices soared 150 per cent to their highest recorded level.