Bomb squad blows up ‘suspicious vehicle’ in controlled explosion as town centre evacuated

POLICE have blown up a "suspicious vehicle" in a town centre in a controlled explosion.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed roads near to the scene in West Croydon had been closed and buildings and nearby shops evacuated.

Cops said they became aware of the car, close to West Croydon bus station, around 3pm today.

A spokesperson said: "Police conducted a controlled explosion of the vehicle as a precaution.

"Cordons and road closures being lifted. West Croydon bus and rail stations will also be re-opened."

Earlier cops tweeted the incident was not being treated as terror-related.

Pictures from the scene earlier this afternoon showed a cordon in place across a stretch of road.

A spokesperson for Croydon Met Police Services earlier said: "Cordons are in place near West Croydon Bus and Rail Station after officers became aware of a suspicious vehicle at around 15:00hrs.

"Specialist officers are attending to assess. Some buildings/ shops evacuated as a precaution.

"Road closures are in place. Motorists should use alternative routes.

"Bus and train services have also been disrupted."

Southern Rail tweeted: "Due to the emergency services dealing with an incident at West Croydon, we're unable to call at this station."

In a follow-up tweet the train service added: "The nature of this incident is now preventing any trains from running through the area."

Unconfirmed social media reports also said there were dog handlers and fire brigades at the scene.

It comes just days after a bomb blast in a taxi in Liverpool on Remembrance Sunday.

A male passenger – named as Emad Jamil Al-Swealmeen – who detonated the bomb is the only person who died in the blast.

More to follow…

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