Hospital explosion declared a terror incident by police as taxi driver called a ‘hero’

Monday, 15th November 2021, 12:03 pm
Updated Monday, 15th November 2021, 12:04 pm

An explosion outside a Liverpool hospital on Remembrance Sunday has been declared a terror incident by police.

A taxi exploded shortly before 11am near the entrance of Liverpool Women's Hospital.

It left the passenger dead and the driver injured.

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Head of Counter Terrorism Policing North West Russ Jackson said the passenger appeared to have made an improvised explosive device which caused the explosion.

He added that while the motivation is “yet to be understood” the explosion “has been declared a terrorist incident”.

Officers investigating the taxi explosion “cannot at this time draw any connection” with Remembrance Sunday events near the hospital, Mr Jackson said.

‘Heroic’ taxi driver’s actions praised

It comes as the taxi driver, named locally as David Perry, was declared a hero by both the Prime Minister and Liverpool Mayor Joanne Anderson.

Speaking at a medical centre in east London on Monday, Boris Johnson credited the driver for his conduct when his car exploded.

Mr Johnson said: “It does look as though the taxi driver in question did behave with incredible presence of mind and bravery.”

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, the city’s mayor Joanne Anderson said: “The taxi driver, in his heroic efforts, has managed to divert what could have been an absolutely awful disaster at the hospital.

“Our thanks go to him and our emergency services, and authorities have worked through the night to divert anything further and we’ve all been on standby and in constant contact to provide any support that’s needed.”

She added: “Well, we knew that the taxi driver had stood out and locked the doors, we knew that early on.”

Three men arrested under Terrorism Act

The timeline of the Liverpool explosion (Graphic: JPIMedia/Mark Hall)

Three men have been arrested under the Terrorism Act after the blast involving the taxi at Liverpool Women’s Hospital at 10.59am, around a mile away from the city’s cathedral where a large Remembrance service was taking place.

The trio – aged 29, 26 and 21 – were detained in the nearby Kensington area of the city, while residents were evacuated as armed police were seen in Rutland Avenue, in the Sefton Park area, until the early hours of the morning.

The male passenger of the car was declared dead at the scene and is yet to be formally identified, while Mr Perry received hospital treatment for his injuries.

A friend of the driver claimed on Facebook he got out of his cab and locked the man in the vehicle after apparently noticing an explosive device.

Another said he was left with “pretty serious injuries” after taking the “brunt of the blast”, according to reports.

A version of this article originally appeared on NationalWorld.com