A car has plowed into several people sat on a terrace at a bar in the Costa del Sol holiday resort of Marbella, injuring ten people according to local reports.
A police spokeswoman said officers arrested the car’s driver and are investigating the incident, which saw the car mount the pavement and run people down.
Police and paramedics rushed to the premises, which is in an area of the centre of town near the beachfront which is full of cafes and eateries and is hugely popular with tourists.
Online videos from the scene of the crash, one of the main thoroughfares in the coastal resort city, showed ambulances and police officers while waiters cleaned up or assisted people on the ground.
The incident took place in the mid-afternoon as the area was brimming with customers having lunch, said Raul Morote, whose family owns several restaurants on the popular avenue.
‘The car was zigzagging and sweeping away everything,’ Morote told AP. He added he could see about a dozen people being assisted on the spot by emergency crews, many of them with blood covering their legs.
Police in Marbella were not immediately available for comment, but El Espanol newspaper reported the driver was a young local man who was in the car with his parents and police were not treating the accident as terrorism-related.
Some reports suggested the 30-year-old Spanish man was suffering from mental health issues.
Pictured: A woman lies on the ground after being involved in the car crash in Marbella on Monday that saw a car plough through a crowd of people, injuring at least five
Pictured: The car (left and right) that plowed through the crowd in Marbella on Monday. A video appeared to show the man sitting dazed in the car as it was surrounded by witnesses to the crash
Pictured: The car that drove through the crowds of bar-goers in Marbella on Monday
Pictured: Bystanders try to help a person who was involved in the crash in Marbella on Monday
Local police reported that five people had been taken to the Costa del Sol Hospital, one of them with serious injuries, according to The Sun.
It is not yet clear how many people have been hurt in total and whether anyone could have been killed in the incident that took place at around 3:30 p.m. local time (2.30 p.m. GMT).
According to local media a 30-year-old Spaniard, believed to be the person driving the car, has been arrested following the incident.
A video appeared to show the man sitting dazed in the car as it was surrounded by witnesses to the crash, as people around ran to try and help the injured or contact the emergency services.
Another video showed the trail of destruction left by the car, with chairs smashed and scatters and people – some covered in blood – seen sitting on the floor.
The bar is in a street called Avenida Miguel Cano, near the spot where holidaymakers start tours of the Marbella in horse-drawn carriages.
A spokesman for Spain’s National Police said this afternoon: ‘We can confirm the arrest of the driver of the vehicle.
‘He is a Spaniard aged 30. A terrorist motive has been ruled out as the cause of the incident. Investigations are ongoing to clarify fully the cause.
Around ten people have so far been recorded as injured. All are being treated at a hospital in Marbella.
‘Two of the casualties have been taken to another hospital in Malaga. One has considerable injuries.’
Several ambulances and at least one fire engine was shown in pictures from the scene, where the car had appeared to crash into a shop front.
Fully-vaccinated British holidaymakers are now spared quarantine when they return to the UK from Spain.
The new rule came into effect today.
Online videos from the scene of the crash (pictured), one of the main thoroughfares in the coastal resort city, showed ambulances and police officers while waiters cleaned up or assisted people on the ground
Pictured: The scene in Marbella on Monday from above showing the crashed car (left) and emergency service vehicle lining the street (right) following the crash
Police and paramedics (pictured) rushed to the premises, which is in an area of the centre of town near the beachfront which is full of cafes and eateries and is hugely popular with tourists
A chef at a snack food bar who witnessed the horror incident said, before it emerged the driver had passed drink and drugs tests.
‘He careered into people sat on several tables on the pavement. Four Arab women who were on holiday in Marbella were among the injured.’
Jorge Martin, manager at the Casa Blanca bar where most of the casualties were enjoying terrace drinks and food, said: ‘I helped some of the injured.
‘I would say anything between six and 10 people were hurt. I couldn’t really tell you where they came from. We’re talking cuts, broken bones and probably head injuries.
‘It was a very distressing situation. I know someone has been arrested but I’m not in a position at this stage to say what exactly happened and whether the driver meant to mow down people or it was an accident.’
Pictured: Stills from a video showing the trail of destruction left by the car, with chairs smashed and scattered
Another worker at a cafe-bar opposite, who declined to give her name, added: ‘The police and ambulance were at the scene very quickly.
‘The first emergency vehicle was arriving as I put down the phone after dialling 999.
‘People were screaming and shouting and there was a lot of bystanders running in every direction because at first no-one really knew what was going on and whether it was a terrorist attack.
‘Others jumped on the driver before the police got to him and held him while back-up arrived. ‘I saw an older man and woman get out of the car he was in.
‘It happened around 3.15pm. The vehicle involved was a white Suzuki, I think it was a Suzuki SX4.’
The man at the wheel of the car is believed to have tested negative in drink and drugs tests after he was removed from the scene.
Well-placed sources said they were investigating whether he was suffering psychiatric problems.
A spokesman for Spain’s National Police confirmed: ‘Officers are investigating at the scene together with town hall-employed local officers to try to clarify the causes. ‘Several people have been injured in the incident.’