Media Briefing on the Explosion in the Subway at Port Authority Bus Terminal

December 11, 2017

Remarks as Delivered by Police Commissioner James P. O'Neill

At approximately 7:20 AM, in a below-ground walkway, which connects the IND line at 42nd and 8th Avenue with the IRT line at 42nd and 7th – and that's the shuttle at Time Square and the 1,2,3 train – police were called to a reported explosion.

Responding units found an injured 27-year-old male. We’ve identified him as Akayed Ullah. He had burns and wounds to his body. Preliminary investigation at the scene indicates this male was wearing an improvised, low-tech explosive device attached to his body. He intentionally detonated that device.

Three other people in the immediate area also sustained minor injuries. The subject was placed in custody and transported to Bellevue Hospital.

Immediate police response to the scene included members of the Transit Bureau, Emergency Service Division, Bomb Squad, Counterterrorism, MTA Police, State Troopers, and the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force. In addition, the NYPD's Strategic Response Group and Critical Response Command were assigned to other key transportation hubs and other locations throughout the city as a precautionary measure.

This incident was captured on transit system video. A further review and interview of witnesses is underway. A thorough background investigation into Akayed Ullah is being conducted by the Joint Terrorism Task Force. We are asking anyone who may have any information about this individual or incident to call Terror Hotline at 888-NYC-SAFE.

Just as the Governor said, and as the Mayor said, we are New Yorkers. We don't live in fear. If you see something doesn't look right, you have an obligation to come forward, call 911, flag down a cop, and give us a chance to investigate it.


The NYPD & FBI through the Joint Terrorism Task are looking to speak to anyone who was witness or near this morning's explosion at the 42nd Street subway station around 7:20 AM. Anyone who was witness to or has any information about the explosion this morning should call 800-CALL-FBI or 888-NYC-SAFE. Witnesses can also visit the NYPD's 10th Precinct at 230 West 20th Street, Manhattan, to provide any information they may have.

Photograph: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office