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Train hits Network Rail engineering equipment near Diss

PUBLISHED: 19:00 02 October 2018 | UPDATED: 06:51 03 October 2018

The Intercity train was heading from Ipswich to Norwich. Picture: PAUL GEATER

The Intercity train was heading from Ipswich to Norwich. Picture: PAUL GEATER

Archant

Train services between Ipswich and Norwich were disrupted in the summer after a train hit engineering equipment left on the line by team employed by Network Rail, it has emerged.

The incident happened near Burston level crossing. Picture: GOOGLE MAPSThe incident happened near Burston level crossing. Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

The incident happened at Burston Crossing just north of Diss on July 24 when the first train of the day from Ipswich to Norwich hit what was described as “a small piece of engineering equipment” left by the track.

There were no injuries, but services were disrupted for about three hours with passengers having to be carried by bus in Norfolk.

A Network Rail spokeswoman said: “While carrying out engineering work near Burston level crossing in July, a small piece of equipment was left near the line. A train struck this piece of equipment, causing damage to the train. No one was injured.

“I’d like to make it clear that safety is our number one priority and we take incidents like this very seriously. A full investigation took place and measures have been put in place to prevent any reoccurrence.”

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) was informed of the incident, but it did not feel it was necessary to produce a full report.

A spokesman for the RAIB said: “This was a comparatively minor incident when a train hit a small piece of engineering equipment that had been left on the track.

“There were no injuries and it appeared that the damage to the train and track as a result of this was relatively minor so we did not carry out a full investigation – we left it to the parties involved to take appropriate measures.”

The line was closed for about three hours while the train was recovered and the line was checked to ensure it was safe for services to run again. During the closure passengers were carried by bus between Diss and Norwich.

The Greater Anglia train was checked and repaired at the company’s Crown Point depot.

There are strict safety protocols for engineering workers and their equipment while working on rail lines and it is likely that the staff involved will have been reminded of the need to ensure all their equipment is accounted for at the end of a shift which is often completed in darkness.

The Great Eastern Mail Line has a maximum speed of 100mph in some places – including part of the stretch between Diss and Norwich.

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