Moment barricades burn as they are set on fire just hours after being installed to improve road plagued with traffic | The Sun

THIS is the shocking moment road barricades were burned just hours after they were put up to improve traffic and road safety.

The barriers – which had been installed in Manchester to encourage locals to use public transport, walk or cycle – were set alight.

The shocking footage shows the blockages burning, as flames slowly spread.

Smoke billows through the air as onlookers capture the events on camera.

Some of the plant boxes were thrown upside down and tossed aside as part of the protest.

The planters were originally part of an active neighbourhood trial to improve road safety and decrease traffic, which began in February in Rochdale, Manchester.

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Planters with road closure signs were installed last week to block entry to motorists on certain roads and reduce driving in the area.

Just hours later, videos circulated showing vehicles driving on the pavement to go around them.

Emergency services were called to the scene at around 8pm after some were set alight and forcibly removed from the road.

One local resident even told the Manchester Evening News: "I think setting fire to it was too far and dangerous. I can understand why there was concern, I don't think a lot of people knew roads were going to be closed.

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"But something does need to be done about the amount of cars around here – it's a nightmare."

But as a result of the protest, the trial has been paused and a further consultation will now take place to consider next steps.

A spokesman for Rochdale Borough Council said: "While we understand there may be some strong feelings about the active travel trial on both sides, violence and threats will not be tolerated and the police are investigating this incident.

"The damage has now been cleared by the council and the active travel trial has been paused while we consider our next steps."

A spokesperson for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said Rochdale fire station sent a fire engine to the scene after reports of a fire involving debris and rubbish in the roadway at 8.10pm on 23 March.

They added: "The crew arrived quickly and cleared the materials from the roadway. Firefighters made the scene safe before departing after around three quarters of an hour."

Greater Manchester Police told the MEN that no arrests have been made in connection with this incident at this stage.

Anyone with information is asked to call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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