Taxi Driver Praised For Locking Suspected Terrorist In Car Before Bomb Exploded Outside Women's Hospital

Photo: Facebook / BBC
David Perry, explosion outside of Liverpool Women's Hospital

A British taxi driver is being called a hero after he locked a suspected terrorist in his car just before the bomb exploded outside of Liverpool Women’s Hospital.

Footage from the incident shows the cab pulling up to the hospital on Remembrance Sunday, a holiday to commemorate British soldiers who have died in wars and other military conflicts since World War I.

Perry picked up the passenger in the Rutland Avenue area of Liverpool and was asked to be taken to the Women’s Hospital about ten minutes away.

As the taxi arrives at the hospital’s drop-off area, CCTV footage shows the taxi driver, who has been identified as David Perry, jump out of the car right before it bursts into flames.

Who is David Perry?

Perry is a local Liverpool cab driver who is now being praised for his quick-thinking and heroic measures with deterring the bomber’s attack by locking him in the vehicle after seeing the explosive device.

The passenger was declared dead at the scene and has been identified but his name has not been made public.

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“The taxi driver, in his heroic efforts, has managed to divert what could have been an absolutely awful disaster at the hospital,” says Liverpool Mayor Joanne Anderson in an interview with BBC.

Perry was injured in the blast and was treated at the hospital for burns and shrapnel injuries before being discharged from the hospital to recover at home.

Three men in their 20s were arrested elsewhere in the city under the Terrorism Act on Sunday, and a fourth was detained in relation to the attack.

The Liverpool explosion has been ruled an act of terrorism.

Investigators haven’t ruled out a link between Remembrance Sunday and the nature of the incident, as it is being ruled an act of terrorism.

Police do not not yet have a motive for why the suspect wanted the bomb to go off at the Women’s Hospital.

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“We are of course aware that there were Remembrance events just a short distance away from the hospital and that the ignition occurred shortly before 11am,” police said in a press conference. “We cannot at this time draw any connection with this but it is a line of inquiry we are pursuing.”

British intelligence agency MI5 said it had increased the country's terrorism "threat level" to "severe," on Monday, which means "an attack is highly likely."

The threat level in the country has alternated several times over the past two years between “severe” and “substantial,” the latter of the two meaning “an attack is likely.”

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson also praised Perry for his actions.

“It does look as though the taxi driver in question did behave with incredible presence of mind and bravery,” Johnson said in an interview to journalists, adding that the details of what exactly happened are still being worked out.

Russ Jackson, head of Counterterrorism Policing in northwest England, said investigators have found “significant items” during the search of an address in Liverpool that is said to have a connection to the incident, and further searches might be necessary.

The Liverpool Women’s Hospital released a statement following the attack, saying that it has restricted visiting access to the hospital until further notice. 

The hospital also wrote that patients are no longer being diverted to other hospitals, and appointments will continue as scheduled unless otherwise advised.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.