Fire service attends cattle lorry incident

Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service attended a road traffic collision this morning (5 November 2019 at 07:08) involving an articulated cattle transporter.

The accident happened on the Nescliffe bypass near Felton Butler roundabout and caused tail backs and also a road closure lasting around three hours.   

The driver of the vehicle had safely freed himself prior to arrival of the Emergency Services but the double-decked, overturned vehicle contained 36 male cattle which needed rescuing.  

In total, five fire appliances were mobilised from Baschurch, Shrewsbury and Wellington where the specialist animal rescue team is based.

Station manager Chris White said: “Animal rescues such as these need to be very methodical and carefully planned with the right resources and experts in place.

“The trapped cattle were highly distressed and likely to bolt as soon as they are exposed to light. They can be very unpredictable, and we had to ensure the rescue was controlled to prevent any further distress.

“They are huge animals and incredibly powerful so the safety of all the Emergency Service crews and support staff was paramount.

With help of an animal welfare teams from Mcartneys - a firm of experienced bovine animal handlers - and three individual vets from Shropshire Farm Vets and Brownlow Vets of Ellesmere, we created a safe enclosure to herd the cattle into another transporter to safety.

Mr White said: “Thankfully all but one of the animals were rescued safely and there was no impact on human life. I’d like to thank all those involved in the rescue and ensuring the operation ran so smoothly.”  

Only one of the animals had to be put to sleep due to injuries sustained in the incident.

5th November, 2019