A TRAIL of white paint, measuring 50 miles from East Lancashire to North Yorkshire, has left highways experts baffled.

Roads from Hyndburn to Thirsk have been affected by the mystery dribbles, which were first spotted last week on the A679, just past Huncoat.

The trail continued on the route along Vivary Way, Colne, and the A56 through Foulridge, Kelbrook, Sough, Earby and Thornton-in-Craven.

The leakage, left either in dribbles or patches on the carriageway, continues along the A59 through Skipton and over the Yorkshire Dales to the outskirts of Harrogate.

The splatters then head north along the B6161 towards Killinghall, joining the A61 between Ripley and Ripon, before the trail goes cold at the A1 turnoff near Leeming.

One driver said: “It looks just like a line-painting machine that’s gone wrong, because the paint follows one distinct route.

“You would have thought someone would have noti-ced their mistake, given the amount of miles they’ve travelled.”

Road bosses said they had no plans to remove the unexplained markings, unless they were proving to be a road hazard.

Colin Badminton, assis-tant area highways manager at Lancashire County Council, said: “The council is aware of the sporadic splashes of white paint on the roads mentioned.

“The paint will eventually wear off the road naturally, and we are not planning to remove it, unless it is considered to be causing a safety hazard for motorists.

“It appears that the paint may have splashed on to the road from a wagon travelling along this route.

“We do not believe it was a county council vehicle.”

Highways Agency spokesman Nigel Ellis said that they had received no complaints along the routes they manage.