Man arrested over explosion threat

Emmergency services at Church Avenue in Bickershaw
Emmergency services at Church Avenue in Bickershaw

A MAN who was involved in a six-hour stand-off with police after threatening to “blow up” a house he was in has been arrested.

Officers were called to Church Avenue in Bickershaw on Thursday afternoon and immediately evacuated a number of properties in the vicinity.

Police cordon off Church Avenue in Bickershaw

Police cordon off Church Avenue in Bickershaw

The 28-year-old man involved was eventually taken away in an ambulance before being arrested on suspicion of threats to damage or destroy property.

Firefighters and paramedics were joined by engineers from Electricity North West and the National Grid, with the man reportedly threatening an explosion using gas.

Residents, including young children, watched on from behind a cordon in the pouring rain as police sealed off the street from either end, while those who needed shelter were re-directed to nearby Bickershaw junior school which was acting as a rest house.

Police were attempting to negotiate with the unnamed man from behind a nearby car as darkness fell, before gradually moving forwards to the door of the house at around 6.45pm.

They used a megaphone to communicate with him and a woman who appeared to be known to him pleaded for him to show himself.

Eventually, just before 8pm, riot police entered the building as the stand-off came to an end.

Police were seen leaving the property calmly before the man involved was led into an ambulance. The cordons were taken away around 15 minutes later as firefighters left the street to attend to their other Bonfire night duties.

A police spokesman said: “We were called just after 2.15pm to Church Avenue to reports of a man threatening to blow up the property using the gas main.

“We attended the scene along with other emergency services and evacuated a number of properties on the estate.”

The man was initially taken to hospital before being detained by police.