The mid afternoon attack has naturally shocked New Yorkers who were preparing for the Halloween festivities.The use of a vehicle as a weapon is reminiscent of other suspected terror incidents carried out in Europe in the last 15 months.
Witnesses described what they saw:
“We saw the guy. We saw the car and it was surrounded by rubble. Yeah we saw the guy, he looked like he had on dark colors and he had a beard. But he was holding two guns. So it was a little scary,” said Josie Lis.
“Say something along the lines of he has a gun, he has a gun. So at that point I turned around, but maybe 30 seconds later I hear somewhere between five and 10 gunshots one after another,” added John Williams.
Tuesday’s assault took place only a few blocks away from ground zero, the site cite of the 9/11 attacks in 2001.
Walter Wickiser took a wider view:
“I don’t know, we’ve been through 9/11. But, now this truck thing and the cars, using cars against people. I mean I walk up that road every day, you know, to go to wherever. I mean you just have to be very, very careful and vigilant all the time.”
The authorities have warned residents to expect a stronger police presence on the streets as the investigation into the attack continues.