Police: London crash not terror
Authorities say 11 people injured in traffic accident
LONDON — A car crash that injured 11 people outside a major London tourist attraction Saturday sparked fears of a terrorist attack but turned out to be simply a traffic accident, London police said.
The accident at 2:20 p.m. outside the popular Natural History Museum in the heart of central London brought a gigantic police response, including helicopters and hazardous area response teams, because of terrorist concerns.
Police said 11 people were injured when a car apparently mounted the pavement and hit pedestrians.
Nine people were hospitalized with head and leg injuries that were not judged to be life-changing.
Panicky scenes ensued after the pedestrians were struck and it took nearly four hours for police to reassure the anxious public that it was not another terrorist attack.
Police said one man at the scene, thought to be the driver, was detained. He has not been charged or identified.
The Natural History Museum closed after the crash but its neighbor, the famed Victoria and Albert Museum, remained open.
British Prime Minister Theresa May thanked the first responders and the public for their help and said her thoughts were with the injured.