AN overturned HGV sparked traffic mayhem on one of East Lancashire’s busiest roads.

Police closed part of Blackburn Road and the nearby A56 Haslingden Bypass at Rising Bridge yesterday during the height of the morning rush hour, after the lorry shed its load of flooring underlay, as well as diesel on to the carriageway.

No other vehicle was involved, and the driver managed to call for emergency help after climbing uninjured out of the cab, near to the McDonalds restaurant in Blackburn Road, at 5.22am.

Lee Cook, crew manager at Hyndburn fire station, spent an hour at the scene.

He said: “The police called us for assistance at about 5.30am. When we got there, there wasn’t anybody trapped, but the lorry was on its side, leaking diesel into the drains.

“We carried out an assessment and decided to block off the drains while the vehicle was recovered.”

A police spokesman said: “One lane was blocked at 5.22am, but at that time traffic was still able to pass.

“After an assessment of the incident, it was decided that we would put in a temporary road closure while recovery took place, between 7.20am and 8.20am.”

Commuters were delayed by up to an hour in bumper-to-bumper traffic travelling from Rawtenstall to Rising Bridge, and those diverting on to the Grane Road also faced substantial tail backs. A crane was brought in to lift the lorry on to its wheels, and roads were reopened at about 8.30am.

The lorry belongs to European logistics company, and was transporting underlay for Haslingden-based flooring company Interfloor.

A spokesman for Norbert Dentressangle said: “The vehicle and trailer have been recovered and we will be carrying out an internal investigation to determine the cause of the accident.”

An Interfloor spokesman confirmed the driver was unhurt and said: “We very much regret any inconvenience caused to motorists this morning as a result of the incident.”