Train crashes into landslide as passengers evacuated day after deadly derailment
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A train in Kent has crashed into a landslide forcing passengers to be evacuated.
The accident, close to West Malling, came just a day after a deadly derailment in Stonehaven, northern Scotland, killed three.
The landslide was caused by heavy thunderstorms and rain – which have lashed the UK since the dramatic end of a six day heatwave on Thursday.
A total of 18 passengers were safely evacuated from the Southeastern service, while a geotechnical expert has been called to the scene to assess the damage caused by the landslide, KentLive reports.
Southeaster have made announcements and shared information about the incident via their official Twitter page – while advising travelers in the West Malling area to seek alternative routes.
They tweeted: "We have reports of an obstruction on the line at #WestMalling we are waiting for further details.
"Train services will be revised and some services may be diverted via alternative route."
The service continued: "The line is currently blocked at #WestMalling because of an obstruction on the line. Trains between Victoria and Ashford via Maidstone East are disrupted, and some services will be diverted via Sevenoaks.
"Replacement buses are being arranged to run."
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They continued: "Our Network Rail colleagues are en route to the obstruction at #WestMalling to help clear the obstruction and ensure the train is on the move as quickly as possible when safe to do so."
The Twitter account confirmed passengers had been safely evacuated from the train.
They continued: "With thanks to @BTPKent and @NetworkRailSE, the passengers on the affected train are now safely off the train to continue their onward journey. The line remains closed through #WestMalling while checks on the obstruction on the line are carried out."
Giving updates on affected services, they went on: "If you're travelling from London Victoria to Maidstone this evening, an additional service will run to Maidstone WEST, departing Victoria at 18:25 and calling at Denmark Hill, Nunhead, Strood and Maidstone West.
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"Trains are unable to run between Otford and Maidstone East after a train struck some debris on the track at #WestMalling. The line is expected to be closed for the rest of the day, with replacement buses running."
Meanwhile, Network Rail have called in emergency workers to clear the tracks with the hope of restoring services tomorrow.
They tweeted: "We will be working overnight to clear mud washed onto the railway by torrential rain near #WestMalling.
"It's looking good but there’s a chance it could take longer so we're advising @Se_Railway passengers check before you travel tomorrow morning. Thank you for patience today!"
The incident came just a day after three people were killed when a train derailed in Stonehaven in the north of Scotland.
The driver, a conducter, and one passenger were killed on the 06:38 ScotRail service from Aberdeen to Glasgow Queen Street.
Six others were taken to hospital to treat injuries, but none were reported as serious.
- In the News
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