Cab driver David Perry is receiving plaudits from around the country as he reportedly dodged an “absolutely awful disaster” by locking his taxi doors just before a bomb went off inside his car.
Liverpool’s mayor Joanne Anderson has applauded Perry for allegedly reducing the damage from the bomb by locking his car doors – meaning the taxi passenger carrying the explosive could not get out.
Anderson said: “The taxi driver in his heroic efforts has managed to divert what could have been an absolutely awful disaster. We knew the taxi driver had stood out; the taxi driver locked the doors.
“Our thanks go to him.”
Prime minister Boris Johnson said: “This is an ongoing investigation so I can’t comment on the details or exactly what type of incident it was, what type of crime it may have been.
“But it does look as though the taxi driver in question did behave with incredible presence of mind and bravery.
“But I’ve got to say this is something that is an ongoing investigation. I think it would be premature to say much more than that.”
The incident occurred near the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, the venue thousands of people were going to be congregating in for Liverpool’s Service of Remembrance.
Perry narrowly escaped while the taxi passenger, who is yet to be formally identified, died at the scene.
The taxi driver was taken to hospital but is now recovering from home.
Perry has reportedly been discharged with cuts, bruises and damage to his eardrum.
The police arrested three men, aged 29, 26 and 21, under the Terrorism Act hours later on Sunday in the Kensington area of Liverpool.
Police confirmed on Monday that a fourth suspect has been arrested too, although his age was not shared.
MI5 is also helping regional counter-terrorism police.
The Counter Terrorism Police North West said they are keeping an “open mind” about what exactly triggered the blast, although it has been declared a terrorist incident.
Armed officers have carried out raids on homes around Rutland Avenue, Sutcliffe Street and Boaler Street.
The fire which was triggered after the blast also destroyed some forensic evidence which could have helped the investigating.
The national terror threat level has since been increased to the second-highest alert, “severe”.