Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 30 September 2014

Derry hit by second security alert after 'bomb' placed aboard hijacked van: Declared a hoax

A bomb disposal officer at a lorry at another security alert earlier this week
A bomb disposal officer at a lorry at another security alert earlier this week

A second security alert has been sparked in Londonderry after another suspicious object was placed inside a hijacked vehicle.

At around 8.45pm last night a van was stopped on the Iniscarn Road in the Creggan area and an object was placed inside. The driver was ordered to make his way to the Diamond. But the driver abandoned the van at Fanad Drive, where he alerted police.

Army bomb disposal experts were sent to the scene and Fanad Drive was closed to traffic.

Some residents were evacuated from their homes and the police and Derry City Council were working to find shelter for them late last night.

The device has since been declared a hoax.

Foyle MP Mark Durkan said last night: "I totally condemn those who would put a man going about his honest business under such threat and impose a wider threat and disruption on the community.

"The nature of the attack shows that its perpetrators have no respect for the rights of anyone for the city, or the wellbeing of the community that suffers the distress and disruption unfairly caused to them."

Derry mayor Brenda Stevenson said she was "shocked and absolutely appalled by the situation".

The alert comes just two days after a similar incident.

A lorry driver was hailed a hero after masked men ordered him to drive a wheelie bin to Strand Road police station in Derry. They claimed the bin had a bomb inside, but it was later declared a hoax. The driver had been delivering furniture at Ederowen Park.

The man stopped the vehicle approximately one mile away on the Buncrana Road, opposite the gates of St Columb's College.

Residents in a small housing development were ordered to remain indoors while an Army bomb disposal team examined the lorry.

Dissident republicans are believed to have been behind the incident, although no group had come forward to admit responsibility as yet.

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