Local and regional police officers in Barcelona fired seven shots in total on Tuesday morning to stop a small lorry carrying domestic gas bottles that had been taken by a 32-year old, unarmed Swedish man.

A police spokesman said during a press conference shortly after 1:30 p.m. that, while police were continuing to investigate the event, there was "no indication it is a terrorist attack".

The man was not armed.

Spain's Home Secretary, Juan Ignacio Zoido, tweeted that it was not a terrorist attack and that the man "has a psychiatric record"

A local police officer, from the Guardia Urbana, fired one shot at the truck's wheels early on during the chase—along several roads in the centre of Barcelona—and officers from the regional police force, the Mossos d'Esquadra, fired a further six shots later on.

"Some" of the regional police officers used their standard issue long weapons to shoot at the lorry, the police spokesman said.

The chase lasted for less than 10 minutes and "less than 3 kilometres", he added. It ended when the Swedish man crashed the truck into a side wall of a road he had tried to go down the wrong way.

The police are also investigating whether the man might be suffering from mental "imbalances" or if he had been under the influence of some kind of substance.

The spokesman said officers had opened fire given the man's refusal to stop and the increasing danger posed to other vehicles, passers by and police officers by his erratic driving and disregard for safety.

A gas man had reported his gas bottle lorry missing several minutes earlier and the two police forces, which share a control room, were quickly informed of the risk.

Some 90 gas bottles fell from the vehicle during the brief chase, but the driver had not tried to run anyone over, the police said during the press conference.

The 32-year old Swede is currently being evaluated in hospital.