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UK News

‘I heard screaming and shouting’: Survivors of Salisbury train crash describe ‘scary’ experience

today01/11/2021

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Daylight images show the scene of a crash between two trains in Salisbury which left several people in hospital – as passengers described the “scary” experience of being thrown from their seats and seeing “flames”.

The rear carriage of the 17:08 Great Western Railway service from Portsmouth Harbour to Bristol Temple Meads derailed after hitting an object, and a second train then crashed into it when signalling was damaged.

Several people were injured and taken to hospital and a “major incident” declared by British Transport Police after the Bristol train and the 17.20 South Western Railway service from London Waterloo to Honiton collided at Fisherton Tunnel on Sunday evening.

Daylight grab from the scene of the train crash in Salisbury
Image: The trains collided at the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire
Detail of the scene of a crash involving two trains near the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire. Fifty firefighters were called to the scene of the collision in which up to a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured. Picture date: Monday November 1, 2021.
Image: Fifty firefighters were called to the scene of the collision

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

Footage from the scene appeared to show the derailed train on its side, but the South Western Railway (SWR) train was upright.

One of the train drivers had been trapped in his cab but was freed and taken to hospital.

All those on board the services – around 100 people – were evacuated and led to safety by firefighters and an investigation has been launched into the cause of the crash.

More on Rail

Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service said 50 firefighters were sent to the scene.

The “walking wounded” were taken to a casualty centre set up at St Mark’s Church in St Mark’s Avenue in Salisbury.

The scene of a crash involving two trains near the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire. Fifty firefighters were called to the scene of the collision in which up to a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured. Picture date: Monday November 1, 2021.
Image: The cause of the collision is being investigated
Andy Cole (left) from Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue speaks to the media near the scene of a crash involving two trains near the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire. Fifty firefighters are at the scene of the collision in which up to a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured. Picture date: Sunday October 31, 2021.
Image: Firefighters helped evacuate around 100 passengers and led the ‘walking wounded’ to safety

One passenger, Dimitri, told Sky News he was “pretty scared” as he “heard a big crash” and “saw flames”.

He added: “After that the lights went out and the position of the train was like 45 degrees tilted to the right.”

Another, Dennis, said: “I heard a lot of girls screaming and boys shouting. Then when the train stopped the lights went out.”

Passenger Lucy Gregory said she fell across a table which came off the wall and ended up underneath another table in what she described as “a really scary” experience.

Local resident Tamar Vellacott, 25, said the collision created a “long rumbling sound like thunder”.

Sky News correspondent Alex Rossi said trees had been blown over by “strong autumnal winds”.

Emergency services at the scene of a crash involving two trains near the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire. Fifty firefighters are at the scene of the collision in which up to a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured. Picture date: Monday November 1, 2021.
Image: Emergency services at the scene of the crash
Police officers at the scene of a crash involving two trains near the Fisherton Tunnel between Andover and Salisbury in Wiltshire. Fifty firefighters were called to the scene of the collision in which up to a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured. Picture date: Monday November 1, 2021.
Image: More than a dozen passengers are believed to have been injured

Great Western Railway (GWR) said the train lines 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 impact SWR services between Exeter and Basingstoke and GWR trains between Westbury and Portsmouth.

Martin Frobisher, group safety and engineering director, at Network Rail, said a “detailed and forensic” investigation was taking place to find out what happened.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme: “We’re hugely relieved that nobody was seriously injured, but the passengers must have had a really scary experience, and we’re very sorry for that.”

Mr Frobisher said it was “far too early to speculate” about the cause of the collision, adding that there is “a lot of contradictory information” in the early stages of an investigation.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the Rail Accident Investigation Branch and Office of Rail and Road are investigating the crash, tweeting: “We need to understand how this happened to prevent in the future.”

 Sky News

© Sky News 2021

Written by: Rother Radio News


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today01/11/2021