A CAR has fallen into the canal off Blackburn Road in Church.

Police and fire crews were called this morning to try to pull the white Rover 200 out.

One witness said: "I turned up for work about 8am and there police and fire engines around and a car in the water."

Watch manager Gary Drinkwater from Hyndburn Fire Station said: “We were called at 8.35am to reports of a car in the canal and the possibility that someone being inside.

”We came with the Swift Water Rescue team from Darwen and team with a boat from Preston.

”The car was three-quarters of the way across the canal with the doors and windows intact.

”We checked there was no-one in the car and smashed the windows.

”We also checked the surrounding area with police in attendance and could not see anyone who could have been there.

”We have cordoned off the canal and waded into the water to pull it across.

”People have been saying it was in the water 40 minutes before we arrived.

”We will remain at the scene until recovery vehicles can come to pull it out. 

“We don’t know how it got there yet.”

A spokesman for the Canal and River Trust said: "By the time we got here the police and fire brigade had arrived.

"It does not look like there was any pollutants escaping from the car which is strange considering the age of the vehicle.

"We will be staying until the vehicle has been released."