Suspects in wheelchair during operation, with police yet to release name of woman who died
Three men have been arrested after a woman in a wheelchair was killed when a van exploded at Aintree University hospital in Liverpool, Merseyside police said.
The 63-year-old, who has not been named, was killed when a van exploded at the busy hospital entrance on Saturday morning, and the Metropolitan police said a man and two women had been arrested over the incident.
Firefighters were called to the hospital, part of the health trust NHS Merseycare, at 6.10am. Emergency services and police were working to evacuate patients and staff from the site.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct is also investigating the incident, the police watchdog said on Friday evening. It is conducting an inquiry to identify any health or police failings or breaches of the Independent Police Complaints Commission’s code of conduct.
Paul McKeever, the chairman of Merseycare NHS foundation trust, said: “I would like to express my sincere sympathy to the family and friends of the patient who was killed in the explosion at Aintree University hospital this morning.
“The whole trust is saddened by this loss and our thoughts are with them and everyone involved in this devastating incident.”
The van was on fire when officers arrived at the scene, the force said. Ambulance staff reported that a woman was trapped in the van. Witnesses said they heard a loud bang.
Merseyside police said: “On arrival, police officers found a man and a woman in a wheelchair, who had been injured, at the foot of the hospital’s main gate. Both were pronounced dead at the scene. A third man, aged 52, was arrested at the scene and is currently in custody at a Liverpool police station.
“A fourth man, aged 26, was also arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and taking or driving a vehicle without the owner’s consent. A 28-year-old woman, who was also arrested at the scene, was taken to hospital with serious injuries. All four have been bailed until 19 July pending further enquiries.”
A Metropolitan police spokeswoman said: “Officers have arrested a man and two women on suspicion of murder following an incident at Aintree University hospital on Saturday 15 June 2018.
“On arrival at the hospital the fire service were extinguishing a fire in a white van. A 63-year-old woman was found dead at the scene.
“A 38-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murder and taken to a central London police station. The second 37-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of murder. Both remain in custody.”