A road had to be shut for more than two hours after an electrical explosion at a set of traffic lights.
Firefighters were called to Sale Lane in Tyldesley just after midnight on Thursday following reports of a fire at the base of the lights.
On arrival at the scene near a row of shops they found grey and black smoke billowing from the electrical link box and there were also several small explosions.
They immediately cordoned the scene off and called out Electricity North West, remaining at the scene for around two hours while the area was made safe.
A couple of nearby homes lost their electricity as the engineers were forced to remove fuses from substations and isolate the supply.
Watch manager Dave Holden from Atherton fire station said: “When we arrived there was a lot of smoke coming from the ground from the link box, and there were a couple of minor explosions.
“It was a case of making sure we recognised what had caused the fire, and once we knew it was the link box we just sealed it all off.
“With it being the electricity system there was nothing we could do, we just had to make the surrounding area safe and call out the experts.
“It didn’t really affect anybody, although a couple of houses lost their electrics. Traffic was thankfully very light at the time.”
The problem was still not fully resolved by the time the firefighters left the scene at around 2.20am.