Pony saved from drowning in Burnley river

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A brave animal welfare officer has been hailed a “hero” after plunging into a fast-flowing, icy Burnley river to save a horse from drowing.

Dave McCormick, who works for Burnley’s Horse and Pony Protection Association, dived into the River Calder to help rescue four-year-old Juno who fell into the water after banking collapsed due to heavy rain at Royle Equestrian Centre on Sunday.

Juno with his rescue team who helped to pull him out of a river.

Juno with his rescue team who helped to pull him out of a river.

Dave and a group of 10 rescuers worked for 45 minutes to get the horse out of the freezing river.

In a last-ditch bid to save the pony, Dave dived neck-deep into the river to guide the animal to safety.

Amanda Fitton, who owns Juno, said: “Dave was incredibly brave. Looking back, everyone put themselves in a lot of danger – but they didn’t think, they just acted.”

HAPPA officer Dave played down his role, saying: “I was just in the right place at the right time. It was a real team effort from everybody.”

There’s more on this great rescue story in Friday’s Express!

 

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