As London cleaned up after a night of intense violence and looting, Scotland Yard warned perpetrators to be “under no illusion that we will pursue you.”
The Met said Tuesday night had been “worst the MPS has seen in current memory for unacceptable levels of widespread looting, fires and disorder.”
The Yard also announced that more than 200 people were arrested overnight and that all London police cells are now full. Prisoners are now being taken to surrounding forces for detainment.
In a statement the force said it had “been making arrests all evening and have a team working during the night examining CCTV images. We will follow up evidence in the coming days in order to bring anyone else responsible for criminal acts to justice.”
As the risk of officers suffering fatigue increased, employers were asked for “understanding” as the Met called on all Special Constables to report for duty
Senior officers said “disturbing levels of violence” had led to the injury of 44 officers. In separate incidents one officer suffered broken bones after being driven at and another has been left requiring surgery for an eye injury.
On Tuesday morning Home Secretary Theresa May ruled out introducing water cannons to the streets, telling news bulletins: “The way we police in Britain is not through use of water cannon, the way we police in Britain is through consent of communities.”
The capital’s other blue light services have also seen record levels of demand.
The London Fire Brigade described Monday as “its busiest night in recent history” with almost 2,200 calls between 6pm on Monday night and 7.19am on Tuesday.
Brian Coleman, Chair of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, praised the “dedication and absolute professionalism” of firefighters.
Cllr Coleman said: “Last night’s events were unprecedented. We received thousands of 999 calls and our crews dealt with major fires right across London.
“Our staff worked throughout the night and have shown nothing but dedication and absolute professionalism. They are a credit to the London Fire Brigade and a credit to the whole of London.
Coleman warned: “Those who are starting these fires deliberately are in danger of killing someone if this widespread, mindless thuggery continues. As we’ve seen in previous days, what starts as a bin or car fire can easily spread to nearby shops and homes.”
The London Ambulance Service says it was called to “large numbers of incidents” connected to the disorder and took 22 patients to hospital and treated many more.
Director of Operations Richard Webber said: “It was an incredibly challenging night for everyone involved, but all the staff working in our control room, support departments and on the frontline worked very professionally to help us reach patients as quickly as we could.
“On some occasions, this was made even more difficult as missiles were thrown at our vehicles and crews were threatened and intimidated while trying to care for people.
“We will be continuing to regularly review the situation across the capital in order to ensure that we can respond to calls while maintaining the safety of our staff.”
Speaking after a meeting of the Government’s COBRA emergency planning committee, Prime Minister David Cameron said the Met would reply 16,000 officers on Tuesday night and vowed to restore order to the streets.