Belfast Telegraph

Police confirm Bangor car fire caused by 'mechanical fault' - confusion over 'terrorist attack' claim

By Jonathan Bell

Police have confirmed a mechanical fault was behind a vehicle fire on the A2 Belfast to Bangor Road on Tuesday morning.

There were fears the incident was terrorist related after police sent the Army bomb experts to the scene.

MP Ian Paisley initially claimed the incident involved a "suspected under car booby trap device". But police later clarified there was nothing suspicious about the fire.

Mr Paisley rowed back saying it was instead a "major malfunction" of the vehicle and not terrorist related.

"If so that's a huge relief and I hope those involved are uninjured," he tweeted.

The terror attack claim was reported across the UK and there was widespread condemnation of the supposed attack. DUP leader Arlene Foster made mention of it condemning the attack during her press conference in Brussels after talks with Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier. 

There had been speculation of the identity of the driver of the car, however, sources said the woman - who was uninjured in the fire - was not a serving police officer.

The Army bomb squad was sent to examine the car which burst into flames on the outskirts of Bangor.

Shortly before 8.30am a report was made that it had caught fire at the junction of Ballyrobert Road.

There were long delays on the A2 between Belfast and Bangor as the road was closed for most of the morning while the Army carried out their investigations before it was reopened just before 2pm.

Ian Paisley has now said
Ian Paisley has now said

A police spokesman said: "Following initial enquiries at the scene, ATO (ammunition technical officers) were tasked to conduct an examination of the vehicle.

"Police can confirm that a mechanical fault is believed to be the cause of a car fire on A2 between Belfast and Bangor this morning, Tuesday 06 March."

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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