ARMED robbers stole cash from a McDonalds restaurant in Rising Bridge after threatening staff with what is believed to have been a handgun.
The incident happened the day after a gang brandishing machetes stole £20,000 from a McDonalds store in Blackburn although police are not linking the two incidents at this stage.
The pair struck as a guard from Security Plus was delivering and picking up cash at the restaurant on Blackburn Road, just after 7am on Monday.
One of the raiders went into the store wearing a crash helmet and followed the security guard into the manager's office, where he produced the gun.
He threatened the guard, who handed over a bag of cash largely containing coins, then ran out of the store and got on to the back of a silver Yamaha moped, driven by his accomplice, which headed off towards Accrington.
Both men were wearing distinctive crash helmets which were multi-coloured but predominantly red and the driver of the moped was wearing what has been described as a high-visibility vest with a name written on the back, underlined with a red and blue line.
The pair had been spotted hanging around in the area earlier that morning in Oak Avenue at around 6.40am and in the car park of the Rising Bridge pub on Blackburn Road. Police also believe that they were in the area two weeks before the robbery.
DS Martin Melvin of Rossendale CID sad: "Although no-one was physically hurt the victims are obviously very shocked."
He urged anyone with information to get in touch and warned people to be wary of anyone who is in possession of a large amount of coins.
He added: "We are after people to put those things together - the distinctive helmets, the bikes, the vest and the coins."
Anyone who saw the offenders or has any information on the crime should contact DS Martin Melvin on 01706 237442 or Crimestoppers, in confidence on 0800 555111.