Belfast explosion was a 'viable pipe bomb'

scene Police cordoned off Melrose Street in south Belfast after reports of an explosion

A security alert in south Belfast on Friday night was a viable pipe bomb which had partially exploded, police have said.

A number of homes were evacuated around Melrose Street, just off the Lisburn Road.

Army explosives experts were called to the scene. The device has been taken away for further forensic examination.

The pipe bomb exploded in the garden of a house. A mother and her baby girl were inside the property.

PSNI Chief Inspector Mark McEwan said it was "only by good fortune that members of the public were not killed or seriously injured".

"Whoever left this device has shown complete disregard for the safety of the local community," he added.

A PSNI spokesperson said a motive had not yet been established.

More Northern Ireland stories


Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Phantom BadgerReporting for duty

    BBC Autos discovers what makes Boeing’s new versatile and transportable war machine so special


  • Papers Please gameClick Watch

    Meet the ‘bedroom programmer’ whose game has sold half a million copies and won a Bafta

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.