Bomb scare closes Times Square, New York

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

Archive photo of Times Square.
Image: flickr user Victoria.

A car containing a bomb was discovered in Times Square, New York City, causing the evacuation of streets surrounding the area.

Reports say the vehicle, a Nissan Pathfinder, parked outside a theatre on 45th Street and Seventh Avenue, had smoke coming out of the back at around 6:30 p.m EDT (10:30 p.m. UTC). Unconfirmed reports say an unknown man ran away from the car. A roughly square area of the city, its boundaries formed by 43rd and 48th Street and 7th and 8th Avenue, was evacuated.

The New York Police Department bomb squad was called in and were able to retrieve the package using a robot. Officials removed gunpowder, consumer-grade fireworks, two five-gallon cans of gasoline, three propane tanks, electrical wiring, and two clocks with batteries that apparently were fashioned as one or two detonators. The bomb has been described as "amateurish". No casualties or injuries were reported.

As of yet police have not named a suspect and are reviewing security footage. The car used by the suspect was stolen and had a non-matching license plate; the legitimate owner of the plates does not appear to have been involved in the incident.

President Barack Obama has congratulated the speediness with which the New York Police Department responded.

New York has been in a state of constant alert since the attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001. In September 2009, a plot to attack the New York Subway with suicide bombers was uncovered by police. In December 2009, Times Square was evacuated due to a illegally parked van, although it contained no explosives. On March 6, 2008, a small bomb was set off in front of the United States armed forces recruiting station in Times Square.


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