It's a known fact that Brits will sunbathe anywhere. When you only get roughly 15 minutes of sunshine a year, you really have to take your chances whenever and wherever they arise.
The Bank Holiday weekend just gone presented an above average amount of sun and thus an above average amount of skin on show in unlikely places - nowhere more so than in the middle of the M62, the motorway that crosses the Pennines between Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Hull.
Traffic was a nightmare on Saturday after a crash caused three-hour tailbacks for motorists. One resourceful sunseeker took it upon herself to turn a regulation traffic delay into an impromptu tanning session, lying out flat on the tarmac and enjoying the sun.
Credit: Mercury Press
The woman, Lily Willetts, was en route to the beach in Blackpool when she found herself stuck in the worst of the traffic, close to the Milnrow exit near Rochdale.
As someone who grew up in Rochdale, I can assure you that sunbathing opportunities are at a premium. You take them whenever they present themselves. If that means bringing Blackpool Beach to the middle of the M62, then needs must.
The tailbacks were the result of a bad accident on the M62, in which an oxygen tanker erupted into flames. Both sides of the motorway were closed while the emergency services attempted to fight the blaze, which happened in the heat of the midday sun.
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Motorist Mark Perry was beginning his trip to watch Wigan Athletic take on Doncaster Rovers when he passed the crash.
"We saw smoke and flames billowing from the tanker," he told the Metro.
"When we came past we saw it said 'gases' on the side so we were a bit concerned. Once we found out it was only oxygen it wasn't quite so bad but still obviously it's very dangerous.
"It's the worst incident I've ever seen on the motorways and we were able to drive right past it so everyone had a good look. We just hope the driver is alright."
Credit: Highways England
"We were called to a fire on the M62 near junction 21 on Saturday morning," said a spokesperson for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service.
"On arrival crews found a HGV on fire on the westbound side of the carriageway. The vehicle is currently on the hard shoulder of the motorway. Three crews are in attendance including firefighters from Rochdale, Heywood and Littleborough. Two jets and four breathing apparatus are being used."
Featured Image Credit: Mercury Press