Europe

Stockholm lorry attack: Eyewitnesses recount 'sheer panic'

Passersby react at the scene Image copyright AFP
Image caption Eyewitnesses described bloody scenes and panicked crowds

Witnesses have described the "sheer panic" as a hijacked lorry crashed into a crowd of people outside a busy department store in central Stockholm, reportedly killing at least four people.

Among those on Drottninggatan (Queen Street) on Friday afternoon was Glen Foran.

"I turned around and saw a big truck coming towards me. It swerved from side to side. It didn't look out of control, it was trying to hit people," the Australian tourist told Reuters.

"It hit people, it was terrible. It hit a pram with a kid in it, demolished it," he said.

"It took a long time for police to get here. I suppose from their view it was quick, but it felt like forever."

John Backvid was at the scene moments after the truck crashed. He told the BBC his initial thought was that it was likely to have been some kind of attack.

"Some people were on the ground doing CPR in the beginning, " he said.

"And I was standing there for maybe 30 seconds before the first police car arrived.

"Quite soon after that they started clearing the area - one or two minutes."

Image caption Annevi Petersson said she saw 'blood everywhere'

Annevi Petersson was in Stockholm for a birthday spa weekend. She was in a shop when she heard screaming outside.

"I heard the noise, I heard the screams, I saw the people as I walked out," she told the BBC.

Just outside the store, she saw "a dead dog - the owner screaming", and a woman with a severed foot.

"There was blood everywhere, there were bodies on the ground."

She said she could see "people standing by their loved ones, but also people running away, mainly into the minor streets around".

There was a "sense of sheer panic", she added.

'I ran towards it'

Gustav Hokkanen works in a nearby shop.

"I'd gone to a local pub after work," he told the BBC shortly after the attack.

"We had a drink and then I heard a helicopter above us. Then our local media reported that a truck had driven into people. I ran towards it because that's where my workplace is, a shop.

"All my fellow employees are safe, I've checked. It's a total lockdown right now."

Image copyright Gustav Hokkanen
Image caption Armed police officers could be seen on the streets

Jonathan Lappin is a science teacher at an international school in Stockholm. He was in a coffee shop near the main station when the attack happened.

He told the BBC: "People started to, like, mass panic and run the other way and I thought they were like actually chasing a celebrity or something because they all had phones out.

"And then people started to actually panic and run into the coffee shop and start crowding the back of it. We were, like: Oh no, something serious is happening here.

"They started to crawl out the window and that's when I started to see the police arrive at the station and were yelling very loudly at people to evacuate and get out of the station."

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The lorry drove into a department store

Niklas Edren, 32, was in a building one block away from Drottninggaten. His building was under lockdown, and he saw an injured person being carried away.

"There seems to be a feeling now that it is over but there are still police everywhere... we have locked down the doors to our building."

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