Two people have died after a car being chased by police crashed into them in Penge.

A woman and a young boy died at the scene in Lennard Road after a car which was reportedly stolen ploughed into them shortly after 2pm.

Witnesses say the woman was aged in her 30s or 40s and the boy about 10.

Three girls, reportedly seven-year-old twins and a girl aged about 11, have also been taken to hospital with multiple injuries.

The driver of the car, a 23-year-old man, has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and theft of a motor vehicle - he remains in custody at a south London police station. 

The pursuit started in the vicinity of Birkbeck Road, Beckenham, at about 2pm.

Venissa Vassell, 18, heard sirens and a car screeching as she walked from a nearby train station and immediately ran to help.

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Photo: PA

She said there were twin girls aged about seven trapped under the car and about 20 people came to lift the car up to free them.

The girls "crawled out", but another girl, aged about 11, who was later taken away by ambulance, was screaming "I can't feel my legs".

A woman, believed to be in her late 30s or early 40s, and a 10-year-old boy she was related to, were killed, Ms Vassell said.

She said: "I did CPR on this lady. I blew in her mouth. It wasn't working."

Ms Vassell said the boy who died was fine one moment, but then "by the time I came back to speak to the little girl to say 'your brother is alright' he was passed out."

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Photo: Venisha Sudra (@VenishaSudra)

She added the accident "all happened too quick" and she "could not explain" what she saw.

Another witness, who asked not to be named, said a black car was being chased by two police BMWs when the driver lost control as he turned into Lennard Road.

They said: "He lost control and ploughed into a family that was walking on the pavement down Lennard Road.

"People were trying to lift a car off a little girl. The police officers that were chasing were distraught."

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Photo: Sculem Stern (@ShulemStern)

Tayla Goodman told Sky News the police chase started at Sainsburys near Penge East station, before the car careered around the corner at the junction of Lennard Road.

She said: "They moved up to Parish Lane and ploughed into a family.

"Some of the eyewitnesses have said a man's been killed. I saw children running away from there in absolute tears, unable to speak.

"It just looked like complete carnage, it was awful.

"A woman ran through the police tape shouting 'that's my baby... that's my baby over there'."

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Photo: Sculem Stern (@ShulemStern)

Dayna Birthwright, 26, who lives in Sydenham, told News Shopper: "You don't expect it, this doesn't happen.

"A week before the schools go back, it's shocking, being a parent as well.

"It's just the fact that it could be anyone. There's loads of kids going to the park, there are a few parks near here.

"It brings out emotion when you hear it's a child involved."

Dominique Benjamin added: "I can't stop thinking about it, they woke up this morning, went about their daily routine and now they're not here.

"I can't process it, on your door step as well.

"Penge is a small community, I'm ringing everyone I know to make sure everyone is alright." 

People have taken to social media to pay tribute to the victims of the incident.

Bus routes 75 and 194 are on diversion.

The Directorate of Professional Standards has been informed. The Independent Police Complaints Commission were also informed and will investigate this incident independently.

Enquiries into the collision continue by officers from the Roads and Transport Policing Command - anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Did you see what happened? Get in touch on 01689 885 725 or email