Bristol bomb scare: Almost 500 homes evacuated over 'suspicious car'

Police believe it could be linked to an 'ongoing dispute'

People have been evacuated from almost 500 homes as bomb squads carry out controlled explosions in Bristol.

Police were called about a “suspicious car” in the Fishponds area of the city at 4am on Saturday and evacuated a large area around it.

Bomb disposal experts carried out several explosions while families were taken to rest centres nearby.

There has been no confirmation of what was in the car but police said it “smelt strongly of fuel”.

Chief Superintendent Geoff Spicer, from Avon and Somerset Constabulary, said he was grateful for residents’ co-operation and patience.

He added: “Public safety is a priority for us and the exclusion area was set-up as a necessary precaution.

“We will be carrying out a full and thorough investigation into this incident now the controlled explosions have taken place.

“At this stage we believe this is an isolated incident and could be linked to an ongoing dispute and we are progressing lines of inquiry.”

A spokesman for the force said the controlled explosions were a “normal operational response” to such incidents.

Police expected an exclusion zone around Cassell Road would remain until Saturday afternoon.