People sleeping overnight in their narrow boats were left “astonished” during the early hours of this morning when they awoke to find themselves sat on the bottom of Grove Lock in Leighton Buzzard.
Leighton Buzzard fire crews were called to assist by Beds Police at around 4.15am after being alerted that water was draining from the stretch of the canal between Church Lock and Grove Lock.
The incident left approximately 30 narrow boats stranded, but no one was hurt.
Crew Commander Field, of Leighton Buzzard Fire Station, said: “It appears that someone unknown has left the lock open slightly at Grove Lock resulting in the water draining away and leaving the majority of narrow boats sat on the floor in the mud, which was quite astounding.
“We carry a lock key so we locked it off and went to warn everyone that the water is gone and offered our assistance.
“We do not know whether it was malicious or absentmindedness, but it is quite obscure.
“The occupants on board were astonished and aghast.”
British Water Ways are said to be visiting the scene this morning to deal with the incident in daylight.