THOUSANDS of homes across Nelson and Barrowford were left without power after an explosion at an electrical substation.

The power outage affected more than 2,500 residents in the Westmoreland Street and Victoria Street areas of Nelson and the Wheatley Lane Road area of Barrowford.

Witnesses said they heard the explosion just after 11pm on Sunday and saw the sky over Lomeshaye Business Village in Nelson light up blue, green and orange.

A factory worker at the business park said: “I was outside the warehouse next door to where it happened.

“The sky flashed blue for a minute then all the lights went out then come back on for 30 seconds then they went out again.

“There was a massive power surge and the sky went orange.

“Three fire engines and police turned up to search for the source and it was a massive power transformer.”

An Electricity North spokesman said power had been restored to all but 53 homes by 7am yesterday morning.

She said: “A fault on the overhead power lines in the area caused the loss of power to 2,683 customers at 11.15pm on Sunday night.

“Engineers quickly arrived onsite and they restored power to the majority of customers at 7am the next morning.

“Engineers were on site and working to restore the remaining 53 customers as soon as possible this morning.”

Pendle Councillor Brian Newman said power outages were a regular occurrence in the area and praised Electricity North West for their quick response.

He said: “It was a substation by Victoria Park that blew up and affected most of Nelson.

“As far as I know everyone’s power was back on yesterday afternoon.

“These cuts happen five or six times a year because we get our power from Padiham and the equipment has aged over time.

“They are very good at getting out to it and fixing the problem but, like everything else, the service is getting old and needs upgrading.”

Police witnessed the explosion and urged residents to remain vigilant in case it happens again.

A police spokesman said: “We witnessed the sky turn green over Lomeshaye Nelson.

“Many alarms were set off and the night time economy was affected due to this.

“Police patrolled the affected area over that night, but please stay vigilant.”

For more information contact, Electricity North West on 105 or 0800 195 4141.