Blind panic in Times Square as hundreds of traumatized New Yorkers run for their lives when the sound of a motorcycle backfiring is mistaken for gunfire after weekend of back-to-back mass shootings, sparking a stampede that left 22 people injured

Wednesday, August 7, 2019
By Paul Martin

Backfiring motorcycle sparked mass panic in Times Square as tourists and New Yorkers fled for their lives after mistaking the sound for gunfire
The loud bangs could be heard at the Crossroads of the World at around 9.30 pm
Footage showed crowds of people fleeing south down Broadway in a panic
The NYPD later confirmed that the noise was motorcycle backfire and not an active shooter in the tourist hot spot
Police said 22 people were hurt – four were taken to hospital with non-life-threatening injuries
Authorities have been on high alert following two mass shooting incidents in Ohio and Texas over the weekend

By LEAH MCDONALD
DAILYMAIL.COM
7 August 2019

A backfiring motorcycle sparked mass panic in Times Square on Tuesday evening as tourists and New Yorkers fled for their lives after mistaking the sound for gunfire.

The loud bangs could be heard at the Crossroads of the World at around 9.30pm, with multiple backfires on the street near Eighth Avenue and West 42nd Street, according to the NYPD.

The popping sounds sparked a stampede as footage showed crowds of people fleeing in terror, with some flocking towards West 47th Street and Seventh Avenue, police told WNBC.

One pedestrian was injured from a fall sustained while running during the frenzy, police told the outlet, while kids were also separated from their parents.

Witnesses claimed that they watched people screaming and falling over one another as they ran southwards on Broadway.

The NYPD’s Midtown North Precinct tweeted at 10.09 pm: ‘There is no#ActiveShooter in #TimesSquare. Motorcycles backfiring while passing through sounded like gun shots.

‘We are receiving multiple 911 calls. Please don’t panic. The Times Square area is very safe! @NYPDnews @NYPDTimesSquare.’

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