Eleven people were injured after a car mounted the pavement and struck pedestrians outside London’s Natural History Museum.
A huge police presence descended on the scene in Exhibition Road, South Kensington, which is also near the Science Museum and the V&A Museum.
London Ambulance Service said it treated 11 people “mostly for leg and head injuries”. Nine of them went to hospital.
We attended an incident at Cromwell Road, South Kensington this afternoon. Our statement is below. pic.twitter.com/yBdANOXuZH— London Ambulance (@Ldn_Ambulance) October 7, 2017
After nearly four hours of speculation about the cause - and fears it was terrorism - police said this was not the case.
Reports on the ground of a car being driven into people outside the Natural History Museum. All media free to use this video. pic.twitter.com/10ePBhqVMF— Patrick Greenfield (@pgreenfielduk) October 7, 2017
People believed to have been injured after a car ploughed into pedestrians outside London's Natural History Museum. pic.twitter.com/cPXBVj5M3H— Stephen Brian Lowe (@SBrianLowe) October 7, 2017
Police have blocked off the road right in front of the natural history museum towards south ken station pic.twitter.com/xqtk6Xa6lq— Gina Duggan (@ginaduggan) October 7, 2017
Javert Borja, who is on holiday in London from Spain, was in the queue for the Natural History Museum when he noticed “at least” 30 people running past the entrance, including families and children.
People were running scared,” he said. “We didn’t know what was happening, so we decided to go into the museum to be safer. We tried to keep calm... Museum workers didn’t know anything either.”
One picture showed a car crashed into two others.
Police tweeted a “number of people” were hurt but gave no further detail. They added a man had been detained. They said they were called at 2.21pm to “reports of a collision”.
Footage from the scene appeared to show a man being held on the ground by others.
A police spokesperson said: “It is believed that a number of pedestrians have been injured.
“Officers are on scene, and the London Ambulance Service have been called.
“A man has been detained at the scene. Enquiries to establish the circumstances and motive are underway.”
We are aware of an incident in Exhibition Road, #South Kensington.More information to follow— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) October 7, 2017
Police tweeted they would release more information later.
The museum said there had been a “serious incident” and said it was working with police.
There’s been a serious incident outside the Museum. We are working w/ @metpoliceuk and will provide an update when we have more information— NaturalHistoryMuseum (@NHM_London) October 7, 2017
People were evacuated from the Natural History Museum and the nearby Science Museum.
Been evacuated from Science Museum - lots of police. Think there has been an attack— Clifford Fleming (@cliffordfleming) October 7, 2017
Clifford Fleming told HuffPost UK he and his friends were evacuated and he saw “lots of police with guns and ambulances and a police helicopter”.
Tom Smith, who was in South Kensington tube station shortly after the incident, said an alarm told customers to evacuate.
He said between 50 and 60 people ran into the station after the alarm.
“People were running and screaming and even running down the wrong escalator, so we assumed the worst and ran on the next Piccadilly train,” he told HuffPost.
Downing Street said the prime minister was being “kept up to date on events”.
Mayor Sadiq Khan said details were “still emerging” and he was in contact with Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley, the national head of counter-terrorism policing.
Jeremy Corbyn tweeted that the reports were “very concerning”.
Very concerning reports from outside the Natural History Museum. My thoughts are with those injured and our thanks to the emergency services— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) October 7, 2017