The blast outside the women’s hospital left one person dead and one injured.
Three men have been arrested under the Terrorism Act following a taxi explosion at Liverpool Women’s Hospital.
Greater Manchester Police said: “Officers in Merseyside have arrested three men – aged 29, 26 & 21 – in the Kensington area of Liverpool under the Terrorism Act.
Armed police had been seen on Boaler Street, Molyneux Road, Cambria Street South and Sutcliffe Street earlier today as Merseyside Police closed off the road.
The investigation is now being led by Counter Terrorism Police North West, based within Greater Manchester Police.
“Counter Terrorism Police North West is continuing to work closely with colleagues at Merseyside Police as our investigation continues at pace.”
Merseyside Police’s chief constable Serena Kennedy gave a statement outside the hospital today, and said: “We can confirm that at 10.59am today (Sunday, 14 November) police were called to reports of a car explosion at the Women’s Hospital in Liverpool city centre.
“Police immediately attended, along with Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service and the North West Regional Ambulance Service.
“Unfortunately, we can confirm that one person has died and another has been taken to hospital where he is being treated for his injuries, which thankfully are not life threatening.
“So far we understand that the car involved was a taxi which pulled up at the hospital shortly before the explosion occurred.”
“Work is still going on to establish what has happened, and could take some time before we are in a position to confirm anything.”
She continued: “We are keeping an open mind as to what caused the explosion but given how it has happened, out of caution, Counter Terrorism police are leading the investigation supported by Merseyside Police.”
Counter Terrorism Policing North West, the force heading up the investigation, said in a statement: “We are working at a rapid pace to try and establish the circumstances behind this and will update in due course.”
“We have triggered our information channels – to inform the local community and businesses about what information we do have and can provide
“We would urge the public to remain calm (but vigilant). To keep updated on what is happening, keep watching the news and checking the Merseyside Police website.”
It is not yet known if there is a connection between the timing of the incident and the fact that it occurred on Remembrance Sunday, with the associated minute’s silence usually observed at 11am.
Home secretary Priti Patel said in a tweet that she was “being kept regularly updated on the awful incident” and that police were “working hard to establish what happened”.
“It is right they are given the time and space to do so,” the Tory MP added.
Images of a vehicle on fire in the hospital’s car park were shared on social media earlier. One of the people who posted the photos on Twitter claimed that a friend who worked at the hospital had sent them to him.
It has since been disclosed that the taxi exploded outside the hospital’s main entrance, next to a drop-off point.
A hero taxi driver allegedly locked his passenger in his taxi before he detonated a bomb outside a hospital in Liverpool, according to reports.
The taxi driver, who has been named locally as David Perry, allegedly pulled up outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital this morning and locked the man in the vehicle after “noticing the device”, before getting out of the vehicle.
The man was declared dead at the scene and has not been formally identified.
Mr Perry is in hospital in a stable condition and is being treated for his injuries.
Social media users praised the alleged actions of Mr Perry.
One wrote: “David saved so many lives today at the risk of his own life , David saved his city.”
Another said: “David Perry today put his life on the line and nearly paid the ultimate price to save others apparently not giving a second thought for himself.”
The blast was reported to police at 10.59am, just before the nationwide 11am silence as Remembrance Sunday was marked across the country.
Phil Garrigan, chief fire officer for Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, said the car fire was “fully developed” when two of his trucks arrived shortly after 11am.
“The operational crews extinguished the fire rapidly but as has been reiterated by the police chief constable, there was one fatality,” he told reporters at the scene. “Another individual had left the vehicle prior to the fire developing to the extent that it did.”
Liverpool Women’s Hospital has since said visiting access is restricted “until further notice” and that patients will be diverted to other hospitals “where possible”.
A spokesperson for the hospital said staff would also be reviewing “patient activity for the next 24 to 48 hours”, and warned that people “should wait to be contacted for updates about any planned appointments or other attendance at the hospital”.
“Our staff are being permitted to leave and enter the hospital under the supervision of Merseyside Police,” the spokesperson went on, adding: “We will be ensuring that anyone affected by this has the appropriate support in place.”
North West Ambulance Service, one of the services called to deal with the blast, added: “Our thoughts are with all affected.”