The European Tourism Association (ETOA) has released an updated statement on this morning’s terrorist attack in which an improvised explosive device was detonated on a London Underground station.
“It is obviously a matter of great concern that up to twenty people were sufficiently hurt in the incident to require hospital treatment,” the ETOA said. “A significant proportion of those hurt were injured in the rush to get down the stairs: the incident was on that part of the network which is above ground.”
The ETOA said that as a result of the incident the Parsons Green Underground Station, where the explosion took place, is currently closed, and the branch of the District Line on which Parson Green is situated has been suspended. Those affected by the suspension can use alternative bus services. Roads in the vicinity have been reopened, with the exception of Parsons Green Lane. There is some disruption to Circle line services, but the ETOA said that those disruptions are “neither abnormal nor severe.”
In a written statement Tom Jenkins, CEO of ETOA said, “This appears to be mercifully inept. These events are successful in so far as they are newsworthy. The most notable thing at present is the striking durability of the carrier bag containing the device.”
The explosion took place this morning at Parsons Green station, which is on the District line route between Earl’s Court and Wimbledon in southwest London. The Tube train had just pulled into the station and the doors had just opened when the explosion went off in the last carriage. 19 of the people injured were taken to the hospital by paramedics, while others arrived at the hospital themselves. Most of the injuries are believed to be flash burns, and none of those injured are thought to be in a serious or life-threatening condition.
According to a local interviewed by the Washington Post, Parsons Green is not a major tourist area, but is instead home to many cafes, pubs and shops.
“It feels very far away from the center,” Kate Llewellen-Jones, who lives next to the Underground station, told the Post.
Another recent terrorist attack in London did take place near a tourist area. In March a terrorist drove a 4x4 into a crowd of people walking on Westminster Bridge before crashing into the gates of the House of Commons, killing three people and injuring 40 more.
In early September the State Department extended its travel alert for Europe through November 30 following terrorist attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils, Spain; as well as in Turku, Finland. The alert, which had been issued in May and was originally set to run through September 1, warns that there is a continued threat of terrorist attacks throughout Europe, with extremists continuing to focus on tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets and shopping malls, and local government facilities, as well as other soft targets.