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Tuesday 21 November 2017

'All hell broke loose... people were basically lying dying in the street', says Irish witness

The scene after the attacker’s car came to a standstill
The scene after the attacker’s car came to a standstill

An Irishman caught up in the terror attack in London spoke of seeing "body after body" after the attacker's car mowed down pedestrians on Westminster Bridge.

Michael Kingston, from Goleen in west Co Cork, spoke yesterday of his shock after he saw victims "lying dying in the street".

The maritime lawyer, who is a director of the Irish Cultural Centre in London, said he was walking along the bridge on his way to a meeting when "all hell broke loose".

Speaking on the Neil Prendeville Show on Cork radio station Red FM, he said he arrived at traffic lights in the vicinity of the bridge when the attack happened.

"I got to the lights and all hell broke loose," he said.

"There were cars racing around the corner and there was a car mounted on the kerb on the far side and people running from it.

"The next thing I heard shots and saw police scrambling. I was closer to the car, which I could see on the other side of the road, and I realised at that point it was a terrorist attack.

"It was quite clear to me that it was a terrorist attack when I saw bodies on the ground that hadn't been in the vehicle and that the police were shouting 'He's down there'. I decided then to take evasive action."

Ushered

Police were telling people to run away from the scene but, before that, he wondered which direction to go.

"There were no paramedics at this stage. There were just bystanders trying to tend to people basically lying dying in the street," he said.

He added he would also have been on the side of the bridge where the attack happened if he had not been delayed by two or three minutes. "I ushered everyone back who was coming across the bridge," he said.

"As I walked, I could see body after body and I didn't know at that stage whether they had been shot by the terrorist. I later found out they had been mown down.

"On the other side of the bridge, where Guy's Hospital is, paramedics started running from the hospital along the railings on the south side of the bridge to tend to the people, to help the bystanders who were doing their best."

Meanwhile, one of the victims injured in the attack was reported to be an Irishwoman. Her injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.

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