Trouble flares at Collon Lane

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A Derry woman has told how a lit petrol bomb landed just centimetres from her car last night as she tried to make her way home along the Glengalliagh Road.

Leona O’Neill, a freelance journalist, was returning home at around 10.30pm last night when she got caught up in the melee.

“I had just left my mother and was on my way back to my own house. I couldn’t see the road in front very clearly but suddenly the taxi in front of me slammed on his brakes and made a very quick turn in the road.

“It was then I saw that a barricade had been built across the road and that it was on fire and I saw the blue flashing lights.”

Leona said she noticed a large group of young people standing by and it was then that a lit petrol bomb landed just in front of her car.

“They were attacking the cars,” she said. “I don’t know if they were trying to burn out the taxi or hijack it, or what but I made a very quick three point and got out of there as fast as I could.”

Leona said that even as an experienced journalist she found the experience frightening. “The petrol bomb could just as easy have been in on top of me in the car,” she said.

“I understand people may be frustrated and angry and this may be in relation to the bonfire issue in the area but there are other ways to voice that anger and frustration than putting other people’s lives at risks.”