Runaway military horses race through London, with one seemingly covered in blood

LONDON — Two British military horses — one of them apparently covered in blood — were seen Wednesday galloping loose and riderless through central London.

The animals broke free during regular exercises, and a number of people and horses were injured during the incident at the heart of the British capital, according to a statement from the British Army.

Four people were injured, at least one of whom was riding one of the horses and thrown to the ground on Buckingham Palace Road, according to the London Ambulance Service. First responders were seen treating someone in the street behind a blue tarpaulin.

It’s not clear why or how the horses escaped, but one of the areas in which they were seen is patrolled by the Household Guards, an elite army mounted unit that takes part in the king’s birthday and other ceremonial parades.

The ambulance service was first called at 8:25 a.m. (3:25 a.m. ET) and by 10:30 a.m. the Army said the animals had been contained and returned to camp.

“A number of personnel and horses have been injured and are receiving the appropriate medical attention,” it said in a statement.

In the interim, the animals were filmed and photographed careening past downtown landmarks and running into several vehicles during the morning rush hour. Sightings ranged from Buckingham Palace Road, in the west of the city, to the Aldwych entertainment district.

The City of London Police said in a statement that it was “pleased to confirm that all of the horses have been accounted for. We are continuing to liaise with the Army.”

Some users on social media reflected that the dramatic scenes resembled a portent for some apocalyptic event, though it was unclear whether their being caught would ward off such a scenario.

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