COPS have launched a murder probe after a body was found covered in "white powder" and "smoking" on a quiet residential street.

Officers made the grisly discovery after racing to the scene close to a school in Wigan, Greater Manchester, on Thursday evening.

Mystery still surrounds the death as police work to identify the person and the substance on them – thought to potentially be hazardous chemicals.

Cops sealed off the scene in Kilburn Avenue, Shevington, and issued an urgent medical warning.

Forensic teams are still working at the scene.

One local resident said: "I was told it was very odd – the body appeared to have smoke coming off it and was covered in white powder."

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A cordon remains in place and a tent erected after the incident is still set up between two houses and next to a clearing that leads to grassland.

Police are treating the death as murder and potentially due to hazardous substances.

Cops have urged anybody who came in contact with the body to seek medical advice.

Detective Superintendent Alan Clitherow, of Greater Manchester Police, said the identity and sex of the person will be confirmed once a post-mortem is held after the body, covered by a white and yellow police tent, has been removed from the scene.

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He said: “We don’t know what the substance is, we have done some initial inquiries, we know it’s low risk, so as I mentioned before, anyone directly in contact with the body should seek medical advice if they feel unwell but there’s no wider risk to anyone else.”

Mr Clitherow said members of the public should not be alarmed if they see officers wearing protective clothing to remove the body, saying this is “purely precautionary”.

GMP earlier said the scene was "contained" and so there is "no wider risk to the surrounding area".

The investigation continues.

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