An elderly inventor’s effort to reduce his carbon footprint with a unique bio-car coincided with weekend events in London to draw some undue attention from a bomb squad in New Zealand.

According to a local paper, the white Nissan station wagon left in a car park was noticed by a local security guard because of its unusual contents – an elaborate set-up with wires and an LPG bottle, which appeared to connect with the car’s ignition.

The navy’s bomb squad was called in and the street cordoned off, late night moviegoers at a nearby cinema evacuated along with staff and patrons of a Burger King plus night shift workers at an industrial building, the Western Leader said.

The bomb squad reportedly had blown out the back windscreen of the car and were examining the device via video link, ready to disable parts of it with small explosions, when the car’s owner was found and explained the system turned water into hydrogen to power the car.

“He was quite happy to explain to the bomb squad and anyone else interested how it worked,” a police spokesman told the paper, adding the driver was upset parts of his car had been damaged.

Weekend events here in the UK, where a burning vehicle was rammed into Glasgow airport and police found two car bombs in London, had put New Zealand authorities on high alert.