London’s network of iconic bridges have long offered romantic views over the Thames and a magnet for tourists and lately … Islamist terrorists. Saturday’s attack was the second to involve a vehicle driving into pedestrians on a bridge in London in just three months.
In March, five people died after an attacker drove a car at pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and stabbed a policeman in the grounds of parliament. The attacker was shot dead by police.
After the latest attacks on London Bridge when three assailants used a van to mow down pedestrians on another of the capital’s landmark bridges Mark Rowley, UK’s top counterterrorism officer said new physical security deterrents were now being considered for the city’s bridges including additional police, both armed and unarmed, across the capital.
“You will also see increased physical measures in order to keep the public safe on London’s bridges,” Rowley confirmed.
Security analysts have long wondered why the city’s array of bridges deemed soft terror targets were left unprotected with bollards as many buildings and thoroughfares are routinely designed with similar structures. The City, London’s financial district is famously enclosed in a ‘ring of steel’ with an array of street furniture cleverly designed to make attacks with vehicles impossible. London’s landmark buildings like the Buckingham Palace, Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament have also had a security review after the recent terrorist attacks.
UPDATE: Crash barriers have since been installed overnight (4 June) along Waterloo, Westminster and London Bridges but authorities are ducking questions about why it took 11 fatalities and two terror incidents launched from the capital’s bridges for action to be taken.