Salisbury train crash driver in hospital with ‘life-changing injuries’

Salisbury: Train crash passengers recount derailment

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Two trains collided in a tunnel at around 6.45pm on Sunday. In a statement today, British Transport Police (BTP) said 13 people were taken to hospital following the crash.

BTP added that the train driver’s injuries were believed to be life-changing.

The statement said: “Ninety-two passengers were on both train services.

“Around 30 people attended a casualty centre which was set up in a nearby church, the majority of who were walking wounded and assessed at the scene.

“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.”

The incident happened at Fisherton Tunnel when a carriage was derailed after hitting an object, and a second train then crashed into it when signalling was damaged.

Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service said it had helped evacuate “approximately 100 people” from the scene.

A Network Rail spokesperson said last night: “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.”

In a statement, Great Western Railway (GWR) said the railway in the area would remain closed on Monday as “specialist teams continue their investigations”.

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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.”

A mother who was out trick or treating with her family nearby likened the noise of the crash to “a bomb” and “thunder”.

Tamar Vellacott said: “It was a noise we’ve never heard before … my young ones started panicking thinking it was a bomb and we said maybe a lorry had crashed on the London Road and not to panic.

“There was no screeching like brakes, just a long rumbling sound like thunder hitting the railway line.”

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