72 pigs rescued in seven hour operation

Pacemaker Press 29/07/18'NIFRS in attendance as  72 pigs  have been rescued in Northern Ireland's largest ever animal rescue operation,  on a  farm on the Ballinderry Road in Aghalee on Sunday'34 Fire fighter where  in attendance including Crews from Lurgan and Crumlin Fire Stations,  A Specialist Rescue Team from Central Fire Station and 2 animal rescue teams from Newcastle and Omagh.'The pigs, weighing over 100 kilos each, fell into the slurry tank when concrete slots gave way. Unfortunately two pigs died during the operation.'Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 29/07/18'NIFRS in attendance as 72 pigs have been rescued in Northern Ireland's largest ever animal rescue operation, on a farm on the Ballinderry Road in Aghalee on Sunday'34 Fire fighter where in attendance including Crews from Lurgan and Crumlin Fire Stations, A Specialist Rescue Team from Central Fire Station and 2 animal rescue teams from Newcastle and Omagh.'The pigs, weighing over 100 kilos each, fell into the slurry tank when concrete slots gave way. Unfortunately two pigs died during the operation.'Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Firefighters rescued 72 pigs yesterday (Sunday) from a slurry pit on a farm in Aghalee, Co Antrim.

A spokesperson for the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service said it was their largest ever animal rescue incident.

Pacemaker Press 29/07/18'Group Commander Geoff Somerville pictured as 72 pigs  have been rescued in Northern Ireland's largest ever animal rescue operation,  on a  farm on the Ballinderry Road in Aghalee on Sunday'34 Fire fighter where  in attendance including Crews from Lurgan and Crumlin Fire Stations,  A Specialist Rescue Team from Central Fire Station and 2 animal rescue teams from Newcastle and Omagh.'The pigs, weighing over 100 kilos each, fell into the slurry tank when concrete slots gave way. Unfortunately two pigs died during the operation.'Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 29/07/18'Group Commander Geoff Somerville pictured as 72 pigs have been rescued in Northern Ireland's largest ever animal rescue operation, on a farm on the Ballinderry Road in Aghalee on Sunday'34 Fire fighter where in attendance including Crews from Lurgan and Crumlin Fire Stations, A Specialist Rescue Team from Central Fire Station and 2 animal rescue teams from Newcastle and Omagh.'The pigs, weighing over 100 kilos each, fell into the slurry tank when concrete slots gave way. Unfortunately two pigs died during the operation.'Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

The NIFRS facebook said the call had been received at 11.36am yesterday morning to attend an incident on the Ballinderry Road, Aghalee. 74 pigs, each weighing approximately 100kg had fallen into a pit containing approximately three feet of slurry.

The post continued: “NIFRS Large Animal Rescue Teams from Newcastle and Omagh Fire Stations, the Specialist Rescue Team from Central Fire Station and Fire Crews from Lurgan, Crumlin and Newcastle Fire Stations worked for nearly seven hours in this protracted and challenging incident.

“Firefighters from the Animal Rescue Teams wore breathing apparatus and used rescue lines to pull the animals free from the slurry pit. Gas monitors were used throughout the incident to continually monitor gas levels from the slurry. Firefighters rescued 72 pigs and two pigs died. In terms of animal numbers this is largest animal rescue incident attended by NIFRS.”

The spokesperson added: “Farm animals in distress can pose a serious risk to farmer or anyone else attempting to rescue them. Slurry incidents in particular pose their own serious risks given the dangerous gases that can be present in slurry.

“We would advise farmers not to attempt to rescue animals in these situations and to call 999 for assistance.”