Earlier this week rail passengers in Merseyside experienced delays to trains after a helium balloon got tangled in the overhead cables.
Network Rail has issued a safety plea to the public asking them to keep helium balloons away from the railway line, after delays to trains between St Helens and Liverpool Lime Street.
The incident occurred in Prescot on Tuesday (1st June) when the foil balloon became tangled in the 25,000-volt overhead cables which supply power to the trains.
So that the balloon could be removed, the line had to be closed, and the electricity turned off to the trains travelling to and from the Liverpool City Region.
In the last 10 years, over 600 balloon related incidents were recorded by Network Rail, causing delays for passengers across the UK.
Phil James, Network Rail’s North West route director, said: “While Helium-filled balloons are fun, they pose a real safety and performance risk to the railway.
“Our advice is not let them loose outside, especially if you’re near the railway. Leave them indoors away from high-voltage equipment so we can keep trains running on time.”
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