Elderly people with Alzheimers Disease were among those who have had to be evacuated from their homes in the Waterside this afternoon due to an ongoing security alert at an army base.
Staff at the newly opened Foyle Arena has been put on standby to accommodate those residents from Rockport Park and Caw Park with nowhere else to go.
The British Army directory lists the Caw Army Reserve Centre on Limavady Road as being a base for the 152 (Ulster) Transport Regiment Royal Logistic Corps 211 Sqn and the 840 Troop 40 Signal Squadron 32 Signal Regiment.
It is understood two suspect objects were spotted near the rear entrance gates to the military base, which is surrounded by residential properties.
Army technical officers deployed the bomb disposal robot at the scene of the alert at around 1.30pm on Monday.
A specialist Explosives Search Dog meanwhile was taken around homes and gardens in the vicinity.
Speaking to the Journal at the scene, DUP Foyle MLA Gary Middleton said: “People here are shocked and out of their homes now as a result of this security incident.
“I am only after coming from the Foyle Arena where I had to take, along with a colleague of mine Drew Thompson, two elderly people over 80 years of age with Alzheimer’s who have been put out of their homes and their routine upset, to the Foyle Arena, where thankfully they are being looked after.
“Hopefully we will find out shortly as to the seriousness of this incident but people here are very upset and very disturbed by what has happened.”
The security alert is close to the spot where David Caldwell (51) was killed in an explosion back in 2002.
The civilian construction worker’s death was the first deadly attack by the real IRA since the Omagh bombing four years earlier.
Police at the time said the device was concealed in a lunchbox that Eglinton father-of-four Mr Caldwell picked up.