Did swan rescued from M65 cause blackout to 3,000 Burnley homes?

James Barrow Burnley firefighter swan rescue
James Barrow Burnley firefighter swan rescue

A SWAN rescued from the M65 motorway may have caused a blackout to around 3,000 homes and businesses in Burnley.

Fire crews responding to reports of a power cable “exploding” into flames found the injured bird in the middle of the busy motorway on Thursday afternoon.

The stricken swan was plucked to safety from 70mph traffic by firefighters who believe the bird had crash-landed on the carriageway after colliding with overhead powerlines.

Energy company Electricity North West confirmed that 2,800 homes and businesses had been affected but could not confirm whether the swan had caused the blackout.

Firefighter James Barrow, from Burnley Fire Station, was part of the team called out to deal with the power cable fire at around 3-30 p.m. “We were going along the motorway looking for the cable and there was a swan sat right in the middle of the road. Cars were having to slow down. Some vehicles were going on the hard shoulder to miss it. It could have caused a massive pile up.”

A rescue operation was launched to save the swan from on-coming traffic along the stretch of motorway near Crow Wood Leisure Centre, which was hit by the blackout.

He said: “I had to run into the middle of the motorway to rescue it. It spat at me a couple of times but it didn’t put up much of a struggle because it was dazed.”

He was going to release the young swan but noticed the bird was injured.

“It looked like there was something up with it so we took it to the vets. It is lucky to be alive.”