A car crashed Thursday into the gates of Downing Street in central London, where the British prime minister's home and offices are located, setting off a rapid, intense security response at one of London's most-fortified sites. No one was injured, and police said they were not treating the incident as terror related. Police arrested a man on suspicion of criminal damage and dangerous driving, and local officers, rather than counterterrorism detectives, were handling the investigation. "At around 16:20hrs a car collided with the gates of Downing Street on Whitehall. Armed officers arrested a man at the scene on suspicion of criminal damage and dangerous driving," police said in a statement. "There are no reports of any injuries." "I heard a bang and looked up and saw loads of police with Taser guns shouting at the man," said witness Simon Parry, 44. "A lot of police vehicles came very quickly and were very quick to evacuate the area."
Live updates:Whitehall closed by police after car crashes into Downing Street gates— UK News in Pictures(@UKNIP247) (@uknip247) May 25, 2023
Police Respond Swiftly, and Investigation Underway
In a dramatic incident that unfolded in the heart of London, Whitehall has closed off by police https://t.co/FbWPt12jcq #updateswhitehall pic.twitter.com/UoAfP0ZybK
Downing Street is a narrow street with a row of Georgian houses that includes the prime minister's official residence at No. 10. Public access to the street is restricted and the heavy steel gates are protected at all times by armed police officers. Bollards and metal crowd barriers also help keep threats at bay. The incident came three days after a man crashed a rented truck into a security barrier outside the White House in Washington, got out and began waving around a Nazi flag. Sai Varshith Kandula, 19, has been charged with damaging U.S. property.