London was once again victim of a bomb scare on Regent Street, early Tuesday afternoon.
Following reports of a suspicious vehicle, the police cordoned off a section of the busy shopping thoroughfare around 1 p.m., the peak lunchtime shopping hour.
Shops including Hamleys toy store, Furla, COS and Anthropologie were affected by the incident, as Christmas shoppers were evacuated from the street or asked to stay inside shops.
The vehicle in question was a black cab that did not have a license on display and had tinted windows, which is not permitted for working taxis. Bomb squad officers crashed one of the windows while examining the vehicle and declared it non-suspicious one hour later.
The Metropolitan police confirmed the incident. “Following a report of a suspicious vehicle on Regent Street, a cordon was put in place while the situation was dealt with. The incident was declared non-suspicious at 13:59,” said a spokeswoman.
The incident highlights the high alert the city has been facing since the Paris attacks in November, particularly in busy shopping destinations. A similar incident took place on Regent Street last month, following alerts to a suspicious object that was found in the same section of the street, near Hamleys toy store.