A speeding car crashed into pedestrians on a sidewalk in New York City’s busy Times Square on Thursday, killing one person and injuring at least 12, and police said the incident did not appear to be an act of terrorism, witnesses, police and news media said.
A Reuters witness said one person was covered with a bloodstained blanket after the collision, which occurred around noon ET (1600 GMT) at the Midtown Manhattan tourist venue.
Hundreds of thousands of people, many of them visitors from around the world, pass daily through the bustling commercial area, the heart of the Broadway theater district.
The vehicle was a red Honda sedan and CBS New York Television said the driver had been removed. Television footage showed police officers restraining a man in a dark T-shirt and placing him in a police car.
Witnesses said the motorist had driven against traffic and onto the sidewalk, striking pedestrians.
“Everybody was just running, everyone was concerned for their lives,” a witness told local CBS television.
Seven people were being placed on stretchers, a Reuters witness said. Shoes were scattered at the scene and one person was covered by a bloodstained blanket, the Reuters witness said.
AFP adds: Driver in Times Square crash was in US Navy, has criminal past
The driver of the car served in the US Navy and has a criminal record, New York´s mayor said, adding authorities did not believe it was a terror attack.
“Based on the information that we have at this moment, there is no indication that this was an act of terrorism,” Bill de Blasio told a news conference at the scene of the incident.
City authorities were nevertheless deploying extra police from anti-terror units to key locations around America´s most populous city, he said.