A number of pigs have been killed and others injured after a lorry carrying almost 200 of the animals overturned on the M32 early this morning.
According to the Avon and Somerset Constabulary, the road was closed at the junction with the M4 near Bristol just after 12.10am on Wednesday (June 19).
Police confirmed the number of pigs that were onboard - and that some of them were killed in the smash. The exact number of deaths has not been disclosed.
'Distressing to everyone'
"The lorry driver was injured and 190 pigs were trapped in the vehicle. A vet came to the scene as soon as possible. They were consulted to ensure the animals' welfare at all times. The lorry driver was freed from the cab and taken to hospital at about 1am with injuries which are not believed life-threatening or life-changing," said the statement from the Avon and Somerset Constabulary.
"The M4 was closed with a rolling roadblock while the lorry was righted, using specialist lifting equipment, at 4am. The damaged vehicle was then moved off the motorway so that the livestock could be safely released, treated and transferred to another transporter.
"This has been a distressing incident for everyone involved. Throughout, decisions have been made to prevent further incident or injury to members of the traveling public and with animal welfare in mind."
"This accident is an absolute tragedy. Not only for the driver who was injured, but for the countless pigs who were killed in the crash," Juliet Gellatley, Founder and Director of leading animal welfare charity Viva!, told Plant Based News.
These pigs were never given a fair chance in life. When they were born, their death was already planned. They would have lived short, brutal lives, destined for human consumption, with all their natural behaviors denied.
"We have received many comments about the pigs, locals expressing sadness at the loss. Pigs are intelligent, emotional animals. If you are against animal slaughter or animal cruelty in any form, the only choice is to go vegan."
Viva! offers free advice, support, and information about going vegan, which you can find here