Officer down! Sailors come to the rescue after police officer collapses while on duty for Queen’s funeral in London
A police officer was carried away on a stretcher during the Queen’s funeral today after collapsing on duty.
The officer was pictured this morning lying on the ground in central London, being looked after by police colleagues and Royal Navy personnel.
He was then carried away on a stretcher.
It comes just days after a guard passed out from the stage while standing guard next to the Queen’s Coffin at the Palace of Westminster.
A police officer was carried away on a stretcher at the Queen’s funeral today after collapsing on duty
The officer was pictured lying on the ground being cared for by colleagues after the incident earlier this morning
Spectators who had queued for hours to pay their last respects to the monarch were stunned when a guard began to rock on his feet just before he collapsed.
The man had briefly stepped off the stage moments earlier before taking his place again as other soldiers joined him for a switchover.
But seconds later, he blacked out and fell forward, landing sprawled on the stone floor to the loud sobbing of bystanders queuing to pay their respects.
The live stream also went out for a few minutes when the police came to the aid of the man.
Today’s funeral service has been described as the ‘largest security operation in British history’, with at least 10,000 police officers and 1,500 soldiers forming a six-mile-wide ring of steel around central London.
Many roads and bridges are closed to traffic, and 23 miles of barriers have been put in place to control crowds and keep key areas safe, with police using sniffer dogs to check on passers-by.
Specialist firearms officers have been called in around Westminster Abbey while spotters with binoculars took positions on the roofs of government buildings.
There is particularly heavy security around the Royal Hospital Chelsea, with an outer cordon of concrete blocks set up by the police at 6am, blocking all roads up to 600m away.
Two rows of bollards stretched across the road, along with a row of portable counter-terror barricades designed to stop a bomb-laden truck.
There was a slight embarrassment this morning as the official state car for Qatar stood still at the barricade for over 30 minutes after an apparent mix-up.
The moment the guard fell headfirst on the stone floor while police officers quickly come to his rescue tonight
Two police officers rushed to help the man while the remaining guards stood guard next to the coffin
Meanwhile, police spotters at Windsor Castle scanned the crowd from temporary towers erected along the Long Walk.
The Met’s DAC Stuart Cundy, the man in charge of the operation in the capital, said the force would use “all available tools and tactics” to clear the coffin of the Queen, the Royal Family, hundreds of VIPs and world leaders and the expected 1 million people to go to the capital to mourn.
The senior officer told reporters that the “hugely complex” police operation is the largest in the force’s history, surpassing the 2012 London Olympics, which saw up to 10,000 police officers a day.