Chaos ensued for the first few moments of the show as much-loved cast members regained consciousness and got back up on their feet.
School children on the bus made a swift exit out of the back emergency window, but other emergency exits appeared to be faulty when approached by Walford residents.
Denise Fox (played by Diane Parish) finally came back to life after being declared "dead" by her sister Kim (Tameka Empson), the cafe revealed a secret back door, and Sylvie Carter (Linda Marlow) and her daughters Shirley (Linda Henry) and Tina Carter (Luisa Bradshaw-White) were announced as safe on the tube.
A five-year-old boy called Louis was announced as missing after his mother screamed out for him in The Queen Vic, but this search soon dissolved after the rest of the characters moved on to other scenes and Aunt Babe (Annette Badland) attempted to serve alcoholic beverages to the underage students.
EastEnders bus crash: Dead, missing and injured Walford cast finally REVEALED
EastEnders bus crash: Max Branning orders Walford residents to lift the bus
EastEnders bus crash: Walford residents lift the bus on Bridge Street
I love you.
Martin Fowler was presumed dead under the bus, but Max Branning (Jake Wood) suggested the able-bodied survivors should club together and lift the vehicle, freeing the former (James Bye).
Calling out for Stacey (Lacey Turner), Martin said: "I love you," before she replied: "No, don't say that!"
It is feared that the 747 double-decker bus driver is dead, while Mick Carter (Danny Dyer) suggested that Whitney (Shona McGarty) was also fatally wiped out in the accident.
At the end of the dramatic instalment, Mick was seen looking around on hearing a phone vibrating underneath the wreckage.
EastEnders bus crash: Martin Fowler was feared dead
EastEnders bus crash: The bus driver is presumed dead
Changing faces in Eastenders: Can you keep up?
Fri, December 30, 2016
Can you keep up with the young Eastenders who have returned as completely different actors?
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Susan Tully played Michelle Fowler until she left for America in 1995, she is now played by Olivier Award-winning actress Jenna Russell
"Pipe down. Pipe down," shouted Mick, before turning in slow-motion towards the bus, adding: "Whitney."
Having dropped the bus back down to the ground after pulling Martin out, some fans speculated that Albert Square residents inadvertently killed off Whitney.
One viewer tweeted: "Not Whitney!! Did lifting the bus save Martin but seal Whitney's fate instead? #EastEnders."
"#EastEnders lifted the bus off Martin… dropped it on Whitney," noted another.
A third posted: "#EastEnders amazing episode!!! Honestly cried when Martin and Stacy were together! Pretty sure Lee is under the bus not Whitney though."