Police and medical staff stand near police cars and an ambulance in a cordoned-off area after a van plowed into a crowd on Las Ramblas boulevard on Thursday, injuring multiple people

Credit: Josep Lago

Van Reportedly Strikes Crowd In Barcelona; Multiple Injured, Police Say

August 17, 2017

A van has struck and injured multiple people on a popular pedestrian street in Barcelona, Spain, and the driver has fled from the scene, according to authorities and local media.

Dozens of people were reportedly hit by a white van at Placa Catalunya, Reuters reports, and local emergency services have called for nearby metro and train stations to close.

El Pais reports that police are currently looking for the driver. The Spanish newspaper also reports that authorities have not said they are treating the incident as a terror attack.

Placa Catalunya is a large public square in Barcelona's city center, popular as a tourist attraction and well-visited as a transit hub. Las Ramblas boulevard, which includes a famous pedestrian path, terminates in the plaza.

Authorities have advised the public to avoid both the square and the boulevard (also called La Rambla).

Anyone in the region should stay where they are, officials say, and communicate via social media instead of telephone to avoid overwhelming the phone system.

Videos posted on social media show pedestrians fleeing the area.

This is a breaking news story. As often happens in situations like these, some information reported early may turn out to be inaccurate. We'll move quickly to correct the record and we'll only point to the best information we have at the time.

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