Burning SUV rams Glasgow airport; 2 arrested
MSNBC News Services
Updated: 20 minutes ago
GLASGOW, Scotland - Two men rammed a flaming sport utility vehicle into the main terminal of Glasgow airport Saturday, crashing into the glass doors at the entrance and sparking a fire, witnesses said. Police said two suspects were arrested.
Hours later, Britain raised its security alert level to critical — the highest possible level indicating that terror attacks are imminent. Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said she had raised the level and ordered security to be tightened in response to events in London and Scotland over last 48 hours.
The airport—Scotland’s largest—was evacuated and all flights suspended, a day after British police thwarted a plot to bomb central London, discovering two cars abandoned with loads of gasoline, gas canisters and nails.
I am adding this in case the link is altered...It has happened before...G:
‘Trying to smash straight through’
In Glasgow, the green SUV barreled toward the building shortly after 3 p.m., hitting security barriers before crashing into the glass doors, witnesses said. Two men were in the burning vehicle, one of them engulfed in flames, they said.
“The car came speeding past at about 30 mph. It was approaching the building quickly,” said Scott Leeson, who was nearby. “Then the driver swerved the car around so he could ram straight in to the door. He must have been trying to smash straight through.”
Passengers fled running and screaming from the busy terminal, Margaret Hughes told the British Broadcasting Corp. “There was black smoke gushing out where the car had obviously been driven into the airport,” she said.
Lynsey McBean, who was at the terminal, said one of the men took out a plastic gasoline canister and poured its contents under the car. “He then set light to it,” said McBean, 26, from Erskine, Scotland. She said the Jeep struck the front door but got jammed.
“They were obviously trying to get it further inside the airport as the wheels were spinning and smoke was coming from them,” she said.
Another witness, Fiona Tracey, described a “bang” coming from the SUV. The vehicle was on fire and “every now and again there was a bang coming off it. ... There was definitely a bang,” she told Sky News television.
Two men were arrested, and one of whom was taken to the hospital, Strathclyde Police spokeswoman Lisa O’Neil said in Glasgow. Police said the Royal Alexandra Hospital, in neighboring Paisley, was evacuated after the suspect arrived.
The car hit the building at an angle and poked into the terminal, directly in front of check-in desks, where dozens of passengers were lined up to check in for flights, police said.
Flames and black smoke rose from the vehicle outside the main entrance. Police said it was unclear if anyone was injured. Other passengers were stranded, with at least one airplane grounded on the runway, the BBC said.
Bush was being keep abreast of the events in London and Scotland.
“We’re in contact with British authorities on the matter,” said Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council.
‘He’d have killed hundreds, obviously’