A number of people have been injured following a collision between two trains in Salisbury on Sunday evening.
The incident happened when a carriage was derailed after hitting an object, and a second train then crashed into it when signalling was damaged.
- UK railway round-up
- Rail strikes called off during Cop26 after deal settled, union confirms
- Class G5 Locomotive Company update on brake appeal
A train driver involved in a crash at the weekend suffered “life-changing injuries”, police have said.
Enjoy more Rail Express Magazine reading every month.
Click here to subscribe & save.
Two trains collided in a tunnel in Salisbury, Wiltshire, at around 6.45pm on Sunday.
British Transport Police said on Monday: “Thirteen people were taken to hospital by ambulance, where they have received treatment for minor injuries. One remains there.
“Unfortunately, the driver of the train was more seriously injured and his injuries are believed to be life-changing.
“He also remains in hospital in a stable condition this morning, and his family have been informed.”
British Transport Police (BTP) said “a number of people” were injured in the incident, which occurred at Fisherton Tunnel close to London Road in the city.
‘Major incident’ declared
A statement said: “We were called to Fisherton Tunnel in Salisbury at 6.46pm tonight following reports of a train derailment which involved two passenger trains colliding.
“Officers are continuing to respond to the incident alongside our emergency service colleagues and the line is expected to be shut for some time.
“Thankfully there have been no fatalities however a number of people have been injured and a casualty centre has been opened at a nearby church.
“Most of these people are walking wounded however a small number, including the driver, have been taken to hospital where their injuries are being assessed.
“A major incident has been declared and this has been a large scale, multi-agency response working closely alongside our colleagues in Wiltshire. We will remain on scene throughout the night working to establish the full circumstances of how this incident came to happen.”
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service said in a statement it had helped evacuate “approximately 100 people” from the scene.
The driver had been trapped after the crash but was released from his cab having sustained injuries that were not believed to be serious.
A Network Rail spokesperson said: “At around 7pm this evening, the rear carriage of the 1708 Great Western Railway service from Portsmouth Harbour to Bristol Temple Meads derailed after striking an object on its approach to Salisbury station.
“The derailment knocked out all of the signalling in the area. Subsequently, the 1720 South Western Railway service from London Waterloo to Honiton then collided with the Bristol train.”
After the incident unfolded, the derailed train was believed to be on its side, but the South Western Railway (SWR) train was upright.
In a statement, Great Western Railway (GWR) said the railway in the area would remain closed on Monday as “specialist teams continue their investigations”.
It urged customers not to travel on the affected part of the network, adding the closure would affect SWR trains between Exeter and Basingstoke and GWR trains between Westbury and Portsmouth.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps tweeted: “My thoughts go out to those affected by the serious rail incident near Salisbury.”
He said the Rail Accident Investigation Branch and Office of Rail and Road will investigate, adding: “We need to understand how this happened to prevent in the future.”
Transport Salaried Staffs Association general secretary Manuel Cortes said the incident was “a very sobering reminder about why safety on our railways is always paramount”.
Claire Mann, managing director of South Western Railway, said it is “too early to speculate” about the crash and said the company is waiting for the outcome of an investigation.