THERE was chaos outside a city hospital when a car smashed into a barrier and a man leapt out yelling: "He's been shot, he's been f**king shot."
Bystanders watched in horror as the frantic driver screamed for help for another man in the passenger seat, who had suffered a gunshot wound to his leg.
The shocking incident played out in broad daylight outside the Mater Hospital in Dublin's North Inner City at about 7pm yesterday.
Witnesses spoke of their shock at seeing the silver car career onto Eccles Street before leaving the road and crashing into metal fencing outside the busy hospital's door.
The driver was described by one onlooker as being in "a manic state" when he got out of the Co Louth-registered Mitsubishi and began shouting for help.
The other man lay motionless in the passenger seat, with a visible gun shot wound.
Medics were soon alerted and came rushing out of the building with a stretcher for the injured man, who at this point had started to come round.
The man, said to be in his 20s, was screaming in agony as he was stretchered into the building.
Witnesses said the male driver of the car was dressed in a navy tracksuit.
"He kept screaming 'he's been shot, he's been f**king shot' at a group of people standing on the street. He went straight into the barrier and nearly crashed into me," one by-stander told the Herald.
"It looked like he was drifting in and out of consciousness, but was screaming as they brought him inside.
"A garda coming up the street on a push bike was the first to see it. He came straight over and the place is swarming with police now.
"There aren't any bullet holes in the car. Paramedics and nurses came running with a stretcher and he was taken inside by at least four people.
"They were telling the driver not to touch him, just in case it made matters worse."
The condition of the injured man was not known last night.
Gardai are understood to be investigating the possibility that the man accidentally discharged a firearm, hitting himself in the leg.
A garda spokesman said they are investigating an incident where a man presented at the Mater Hospital.
He said no arrests have been made in relation to the incident but that gardai remained at the scene last night.