ARMED police closed a dual carriageway after a ball bearing was fired from a catapult at cars.

Police closed the A35 Christchurch bypass on Thursday night and were seen carrying out searches for nearly two hours following the reports.

Officers were called to the scene, between Somerford and Stony Lane roundabouts at 8.03pm.

A grey Fiat Scudo had sustained damage to windows while it was travelling along the road and a short time later a second car, a silver Nissan Micra, was damaged in the same way.

Police, including firearms officers, searched the area but no individuals were found. 

One of the drivers sustained a minor cut to his arm.

Bournemouth Echo:

A spokesperson for Dorset Police said: "Investigations are underway to establish what caused the damage and find who is responsible for the incident.

"One of the vehicles has been examined and it is believed the damage was caused by a ball bearing from a catapult."

No arrests have been made.

Christchurch Neighbourhood Inspector, Cheyne Marley, said: “Thankfully neither driver was injured and the damage did not cause them to lose control of their vehicles. Throwing items at moving vehicles is extremely dangerous and reckless.

“I would urge anyone who knows who was responsible for this incident to contact Dorset Police.

"Officers from the local neighbourhood policing team will be carrying out high visibility reassurance patrols in the coming days and can be approached with any concerns."

Bournemouth Echo:

Several armed police vehicles were spotted driving westbound along the bypass, and officers with firearms were searching through the undergrowth.

The road was reopened at around 10.15pm with officers departing the scene.

Side roads including Salisbury Road, from Burton, and Ambury Road which runs alongside the bypass, were also closed.