A joyriding digger driver narrowly escaped tragedy after striking an electricity pylon in the Irish Republic
The culprit caused thousands of euro in damage to the ESB pylon which was left in a mangled condition following the collision outside Clara, Co Offaly.
The digger was discovered burnt out at the scene.
Units of the fire brigade and gardai cordoned off the crash site and alerted the ESB to deal with the damaged pylon.
The digger is believed to have been stolen from a local authority yard in the early hours of yesterday.
The ESB power supply in the area was not affected as a result of the incident.
"The vehicle struck one leg of the transmission tower and the tower began to keel over and immediately tripped the system to allow alternative supply," said an ESB spokeswoman.
"We are working with the gardai on establishing the circumstances surrounding this incident.
"There was no interruption to supply and repair teams are on the scene to conduct the necessary work," she added.
Gardai confirmed the matter was under investigation and enquiries were ongoing.
Despite some initial confusion, the ESB confirmed that the vehicle had not become electrified at any time during the incident.
Once the site has been cleared by the ESB, gardai are due to examine the vehicle in the hope that it may reveal clues as to the identity of the driver.
Source Irish Independent