Fertiliser lorry's crash causes Bircher home evacuation

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Residents have been re-homed after a lorry crashed into a house, shedding thousands of kilograms of fertiliser.

It was carrying about 32 tonnes of ammonium nitrate based fertiliser, which is a classified dangerous substance for its explosive potential.

The incident happened in Bircher, near Leominster, at 16:21 GMT on Tuesday.

Fire crews spent six hours at the scene and called in assistance to isolate overhead power cables which were also damaged in the collision.

'Significant damage '

Start Quote

Fortunately the lorry driver and the occupants of the house were not injured as a result of the collision.”

End Quote Neil Lilwall Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service

The lorry crashed into the gable end and roof of the property and spilled about 4,000kg (8,818lb) of its fertiliser load into the garden.

Station Commander Neil Lilwall, from Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service, said: "Fortunately the lorry driver and the occupants of the house were not injured as a result of the collision.

"However, there was significant damage to the property and a local authority building control officer confirmed that temporary alternative accommodation had to be found for the home owner."

West Mercia Police Hazardous Material Officers were also called to assist the on scene.

Protective sheeting was used to keep the spilled load dry and to reduce the risk to the environment.

West Mercia Police is investigating the cause of the incident.

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