London hit by alleged terror attack as pedestrians hit by car outside UK Parliament
Westminster car crash: handcuffed man taken away by police – video
London, August 14, 2018 (AltAfrica)-A man has been arrested on suspicion of terror offences after a car crashed into a number of cyclists and pedestrians before hitting security barriers outside the Houses of Parliament in London, police have said.
Streets around Parliament Square, Millbank and Victoria Tower Gardens have been cordoned off as dozens of armed police swooped on the scene. The length of Whitehall is completely shut off to traffic, with the cordon extended up to where the road meets Trafalgar Square. Officers could be seen surrounding the car before leading a man away in handcuffs. A number of ambulances were at the scene.
Scotland Yard said: “At 0737 hours today, a car was in collision with barriers outside the Houses of Parliament. The male driver of the car was detained by officers at the scene. A number of pedestrians have been injured. Officers remain at the scene.
“At this stage, officers do not believe anybody is in a life-threatening condition. Cordons are in place to assist the investigation. Westminster tube station is closed.”
Peter Rhodes, an assistant director of operations with the service, said: “We were called at 7.40am to reports of an incident on St Margaret Street, SW1. We sent a number of resources to the scene including three ambulance crews, responders in cars and an incident response officer.
“We have treated two people at the scene for injuries that are not believed to be serious and have taken them to hospital.”
Transport for London said though Westminster station was closed, it was open for interchange points.
A witness, Ewalina Ochab, said: “I think it looked intentional – the car drove at speed and towards the barriers. I was walking on the other side [of the road]. I heard some noise and someone screamed.”
Another witness, the local businessman Jason Williams, said he saw a large dark car traveling at about 40mph crash into the barriers outside parliament. “It looked like a deliberate attack,” he said. “I was shocked. I was told to move and I started to run.”
Melanie Spindler, a tourist from Germany, was in the area with her husband, and their two children.
She said: “We tried to go to Westminster pier for a trip down the Thames. We arrived just now and realised the area was closed. This [potential terror incidents] is the reality now. We are not concerned at this stage.”
Sam Goodman, who works for the Labour party at parliament was leaving the evacuated area. He said: “It’s business as usual, we’ve been here before. It’s a bit tense but there’s not a huge amount of knowledge about what has happened. There was a very quick response from the police.”
The Houses of Parliament are surrounded with security barriers of steel and concrete. The measures were extended after the Westminster Bridge attack in March 2017, when Khalid Masood ploughed a car into crowds on Westminster Bridge, killing four people.
Masood abandoned his car then stabbed and killed unarmed PC Keith Palmer before he was shot by police in a courtyard outside parliament.