RELIEF has been expressed that there were no reports of injuries after members of the public walked past a car which was rocked by a pipe bomb blast in Ballymena.
A device exploded inside a car parked close to businesses and flats at the Crebilly Road side of the Ballykeel 1 estate.
It is understood a number of members of the public walked past the vehicle before the blast.
On social media, people have been telling of their lucky escapes.
There were no reports of any injuries.
North Antrim Ulster Unionist MLA Robin Swann called on the community “to rally around the police and help track down the makers of a pipe bomb which detonated in the back of a car in Ballymena”.
He added: “As a North Antrim MLA, I totally condemn the making of this device which thankfully when it detonated, did not kill or injure anyone.
“I urge anyone and everyone in the constituency who has information about who made this potentially lethal device to give that information to the police as soon as possible.
“Such devices serve no purpose and must not be tolerated in a democratic society. It is a matter of the utmost urgency that the people who constructed this device are brought before the courts,” said Assemblyman Swann.
SDLP Ballymena Councillor Eugene Reid has urged anyone with information about a pipe bomb explosion in the back of a car to come forward to police as soon as possible.
Councillor Eugene Reid said: “People are shocked this morning to hear that a pipe bomb exploded in the back of a car in the Crebilly Road area last night. Those responsible for this reckless incident didn’t care about the lives of those who could have been injured.
“I want to place on record my thanks to police who acted quickly to make the area safe.
“I would encourage anyone with information about this incident to come forward to police as soon as possible.”
Detectives are appealing for witnesses following an incident on Crebilly Road in Ballymena last night, Friday 05 June.
Shortly after 11pm police received a report that a car had been set on fire close to shops in the area.
Police attended and observed a suspicious object in the rear of the vehicle.
Army ammunition technical officers were tasked to examine the object that was declared to be the remnants of a pipe bomb type device that had detonated. Damage was caused to the car as a result of the incident.
Detective Sergeant Crothers said: “This was a reckless act that had the potential to cause serious injury to anyone who was close to the car when the device detonated.
“Detectives are working to establish a motive and identify those responsible and I am appealing to anyone with information, or who noticed any suspicious activity in the area, to contact detectives on 101, quoting reference number 2092 05/06/20.”
A report can be made using the online reporting form via www.psni.police.uk/makeareport
Information can also be provided to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org
- Statements can be sent to email@example.com