8th May - 1957

A fire officer and police officer investigating the damage with officials from a nearby factory
Junction of Linacre & Bridge Roads
Richmond Sausage Works to left

(young Obie standing by the van)

CONTINUED issuing of gas and steam from the sewer following a series of explosions which blew off manhole-covers in the Bridge Road area of Litherland yesterday made it impossible to ascertain the extent of the damage to the sewer.

Litherland Council workmen are unable to go down to find the cause of the explosions, but the water in the pipe seemed to be flowing normally, which indicated that the damage was not extensive.

The explosions shortly after mid-day, brought road traffic to a temporary standstill and made pedestrians scatter.

Occurring almost simultaneously the explosions were apparently caused by an excess collection of sewer gas along an old sewer which is linked to the new Rimrose brook sewer and passes along Delta and Bridge Road, Litherland. Scores of people ran out from their homes in alarm. Last night there was still a pungent smell of gas in the area.

Manhole-covers blown off
One man-hole cover blew off in the middle of the large traffic island at the junction of Bridge Road and Linacre Road, leaving a gaping hole and littering debris in all directions. Two more covers were blown off a short distance away. These were situated actually adjoining the garage of the Richmond sausage factory in Delta Road, but no damage was done to vehicles.

There were no hospital casualties, but a cyclist was knocked from his machine a woman pedestrian was splashed with tar.

Waterloo Fire Brigade moved to deal with any outbreak of fire which might have been caused by escaping gas. A fireman wearing breathing apparatus descended a man-hole from which clouds of steam mingled with sewer gas were issuing, but there were no indications of fire in the sewer.


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