The Australian/Hat Tip Dumme
NEW York’s Times Square remained in lockdown after it was evacuated while police continued to investigate a suspicious car.
Explosives were found in the dark-colored SUV, Reuters reported a source in the New York City Fire Department as saying, but the Police Department would not confirm this.
Officials told Fox News Channel that initial reports were the car had been found with a “failed incendiary device,” including gasoline, propane and wires.
A man was seen running from the vehicle, but authorities have not been able to find or identify him, the official said.
After 6:30 pm (local time), police received a call about a suspicious vehicle and blocked the area.
New York Police Department (NYPD) Detective John Sweeney said the bomb squad was called to inspect a suspicious vehicle that was on fire in the square.
“There seemed to be smoke coming out of the car. Now they’re removing stuff out of the car to check what it is,” he told AFP.
“No one has determined it’s a bomb.”
A spokesman for the New York Fire Department (NYFD) also said it had not yet been determined whether a bomb was present.
“There’s possibly an explosive device,” he told AFP.
The NYFD spokesman said that initially “firefighters came on scene, responding to a small vehicle fire. They realized something was a little suspicious and called in the NYPD and the bomb squad.”
Police told The Wall Street Journal the car had license plates that didn’t match the make of the car, raising suspicions.
The incident occurred on one of the theater district’s busiest nights, some shows, including The Lion King, were delayed by an hour or more, according to the Broadway World website.
Police said they knew of no theater cancellations as a result of the incident.
Oprah Winfrey was in attendance of the new hit Fela and the production began on time and wasn’t interrupted, according to a person familiar with the situation.
At around 8pm, Lucy Liu, one of the stars of the play God of Carnage, walked toward the police barricade to ask police officers what had happened.
Times Square is one of the city’s most high profile attractions and police are deployed in large numbers, AFP reported.
In December they closed the area while inspecting a van at first feared to contain a bomb, but which turned out to be carrying nothing dangerous.