Parliament shooting: Police warn Londoners to avoid swathe of Westminster after terror attack
Londoners were told to stay away from a swathe of central London after a terror attack in Westminster today.
Medical crews were seen treating patients on Westminster Bridge after a 4x4 vehicle mowed down pedestrians and a police officer was stabbed near Parliament.
At least four shots were reportedly heard after the vehicle ploughed into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge. A police officer was then stabbed.
The Met warned Londoners to avoid Parliament Square; Whitehall; Westminster Bridge; Lambeth Bridge; Victoria Street up to the junction with Broadway and the Victoria Embankment up to Embankment tube.
A Scotland Yard spokesman confirmed the attack was being treated as “a terrorist incident until we know otherwise”.
The Prime Minister, who had been in PMQs, was in the division lobby when she was alerted and bundled into a car.
Members of the Met Police’s new heavily armed SAS-style counter terrorism unit were deployed to the scene with automatic weapons.
The sitting of the House of Commons was suspended and MPs were told to stay in their chambers.
A number of people reported seeing a man with a knife in a confrontation with police before shots were heard.
Scotland Yard confirmed it was dealing with a “firearms incident” and said officers were called at 2.40pm.
Alan Parry, a Sky Sports presenter who was at the scene, said he heard an “almighty crash” and saw a 4x4 crashed into the railings outside Parliament with smoke coming from the bonnet.
He said: “The guy who was the driver of the 4x4 got out of the car and sprinted away from the scene. That was followed by what sounded like gun shots and all hell was let loose, police descended everywhere.”
The London Ambulance Service also confirmed it was responding to the incident but could not immediately provide further information.
MPs and journalists were told to stay in their offices as the incident unfolded in the street outside. Parliamentary business was suspended.
“Then I walked in as police officers and security start rushing out of the front doors on to the street.
"When I got inside I was wondering what the hell was going on and I saw dozens of panicked people running down the street. The first stream was around 30 people and the second stream was 70 people.
"It looked like they were running for their lives.”
Alistair Bunkall described the scene on Westminster Bridge as he stood at Waterloo station.
“I’ve counted at least 15 ambulances or paramedic vehicles. There are a number of unmarked police cars here. Police are putting up cordens. There are paramedics walking up to Westminster Bridge.
“Two ambulances have just left with their sirens perhaps heading to St Thomas’ hospital.”
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