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Motorway rescue... with a sausage roll

RAC patrolman Mark Bird who saved a dog which was loose on the M55 by tempting it off the carriageway with a sausage roll.

RAC patrolman Mark Bird who saved a dog which was loose on the M55 by tempting it off the carriageway with a sausage roll.

  • by David Sharman
 

IT may have made a dog’s dinner of his lunch, but Mark Bird helped prevent a motorway catastrophe using just a humble sausage roll.

RAC patrolman Mark went to the rescue with his tasty snack after spotting a loose dog on the M55.

The misplaced mutt was wandering along the hard shoulder when quick-thinking Mark leapt out of his van on the hard shoulder, phoning animal control before attempting to lure it away from the carriageway with the pork pastry.

The 46-year-old told the Gazette: “Just out of the corner of my eye I spotted this dog on the hard shoulder.

“It was a big mastiff type dog and I thought it was odd.

“I pulled over and went back to see if it would come to me, but it wouldn’t – he was very scared.

“I teased him with some of my sausage roll which helped him befriend me, so while I was busy feeding him the animal control officers were able to get hold of him and help him off the motorway.

“It ruined my lunch but there you go!”

Canine-lover Mark, who patrols the Fylde coast daily in his van, is the proud owner of eight-year-old German shepherd Scrappy, Labrador Mitch, five, and six-year-old cocker spaniel Baxter.

However, despite Mark’s heroic exploits with the Marks & Spencer treat – on the eastbound carriageway close to junction 4 at Blackpool on Monday morning – he still ended up in the doghouse with partner Sarah, 46.

He said: “My missus went mad because I’d given it a big, expensive sausage roll but that’s just how it is – we’ve had a bit of a giggle about it.”

Mark’s boss, RAC patrol team manager Andy Marham said: “It might seem as though one of our patrolmen has gone above and beyond the call of duty but our patrols encounter these kinds of situations all the time.

“I’m delighted to hear Mark managed to ensure no harm came to the dog and prevented anything bad happening to it or to any motorists.

“Loose animals on roads can be a major hazard. Fortunately, this dog’s tale of adventure had a positive outcome and I am very pleased to hear that our canine companion was recovered

“While dog rescue is not necessarily on any of our patrols’ standard job descriptions, the life of an RAC patrol often calls for much more than simply assisting people with breakdowns and repairing mechanical faults.

“Our patrols are often required to think on their feet and to pull out all the stops to help in tricky or dangerous situations.”

Blackpool animal wardens collected the dog, a mastiff, from the scene.

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