Police units respond to London Bridge after reports of a van hitting pedestrian on the bridge in central London on Saturday. Photo by Will Oliver/EPA
June 3 (UPI) -- London police confirmed seven victims and three attackers are dead following a terrorist incident on the London Bridge that spread into the nearby area.
London Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said seven people were killed when a van mowed down pedestrians on the bridge about 10:08 p.m. and the three men inside the vehicle then fled on foot and committed stabbings with 12-inch knives at nearby bars and restaurants in the Borough Market area.
Police fatally shot three attackers to put an end to the incident. They don't believe there were any other perpetrators at the scene. The men were allegedly wearing hoax suicide vests.
London Ambulance Service said Saturday it had taken "at least 48 patients to five hospitals across London."
British Prime Minister Theresa May spoke out Sunday morning against "evil ideology of Islamist extremism."
May, who is running for reelection in this week's vote, said there is "far too much tolerance for extremism in our country."
"Things need to change," May said in remarks outside of the prime minister's residence at 10 Downing Street.
Officials said they received reports of a vehicle striking pedestrians on London Bridge around 10:08 p.m. About 35 minutes later, they tweeted about a police response at Borough Market, a popular restaurant and bar area south of the River Thames near London Bridge. They said the three men left the vehicle on London Bridge and made their way to the market, stabbing people with 12-inch knives.
A transport police officer was injured while responding to London Bridge.
"Officers have then responded to reports of stabbings in #BoroughMarket. Armed officers responded and shots have been fired," one tweet said.
The police department said there also was a stabbing at another location, the Vauxhall district southwest of London Bridge, but it was unrelated to the first two attacks.
Witnesses said they saw a white van struck pedestrians on London Bridge. BBC reporter Holly Jones, who was on the bridge at the time, said she saw a man driving the van "probably traveling about 50 miles an hour."
"He swerved right round me and then hit about five or six people. He hit about two people in front of me and then three behind," she said.
Another witness, Mark Roberts, told CNN he saw the van hit multiple people before hitting a bus stop and stopping.
"Within my line of sight, there were five or six people on the ground that were not moving," he said.
May earlier described the attacks as "dreadful."
"Following updates from police and security officials, I can confirm that the terrible incident in London is being treated as a potential act of terrorism," she said.
"This is a fast-moving investigation. I want to express my huge gratitude to the police and emergency services who are on the scene," May added. "Our thoughts are with those who are caught up in these dreadful events."
The city's transportation authority, Transport for London, shut down the bridge in both directions.
The emergency incident comes months after another terror attack in which a man drove an SUV into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge outside Parliament in London. Five people died in that attack.