Security dye foils armed bank raider
A special security dye foiled an armed raid at an Ulster Bank during which staff were threatened.
The raid, which happened at a branch in Blackpool, prompted a major Garda response with uniformed officers and members of the armed Regional Support Unit rushing to the scene.
Gardai are still searching for a lone male who entered the bank armed with a weapon believed to be a large knife and held up staff.
The man entered the Ulster Bank branch and reportedly threatened staff with the weapon before fleeing with a small amount of money. However, a quick-thinking member of the staff had given the armed raider special cash bundle.
When the armed man tried to flee the contents exploded, showering him and the loot in a purple dye.
He exited the bank on foot and fled on the Old Mallow Road side of the complex covered from head-to-toe in the staining dye.
A number of road blocks were put in place in the general Blackpool, Watercourse Road and Mallow Road areas as Gardai tried to block the man's escape route.
Bank staff are understood to have been deeply shocked by the incident which occurred shortly before 11am.
He was described as a tallish man approximately 6ft in height who was wearing a grey tracksuit pants and dark top and baseball cap.
Gardai have interviewed employees of the bank and have appealed for anybody who may have information on the raid to come forward.
Anybody who saw anything suspicious in the vicinity of the bank is asked to contact Gardai at Mayfield on 021-4558510 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.
They are investigating the theory the suspect may have had an accomplice on nearby Spring Lane and have asked anybody who may have seen a suspicious vehicle in the area to come forward.