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Three people have died after a train travelling from Aberdeen to Glasgow Queen Street derailed on Wednesday morning – one of those is believed to be the driver of the train.
British Transport Police (BTP) were called to the line in Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire at 9.43am on Wednesday following a report that a train travelling from Aberdeen to Glasgow Queen Street had derailed.
Officers remained on scene on Wednesday alongside the ambulance service, fire brigade and colleagues from Police Scotland.
In a statement British Transport Police says ‘very sadly despite the best efforts of paramedics, we can confirm that three people have been pronounced dead at the scene’.
While formal identification is yet to take place, the driver of the train is very sadly believed to have died. His family have been informed and are being supported by specially trained family liaison officers.
Officers are continuing to work to inform the families of the other two people who sadly died.
Six people have been taken to hospital to be treated for injuries, which thankfully are not believed to be serious.
Chief Superintendent Eddie Wylie said: “This is a tragic incident and first and foremost our thoughts are with the families and friends of those who have very sadly died.
“We remain on scene alongside our emergency service colleagues, and a major incident operation has been underway. I would like to reassure the public that this was not a busy service, and from CCTV enquiries and witness statements we believe all passengers have been accounted for. However, once the area has been made safe then a full and thorough search will be conducted, which is likely to take some time.
“I know many people will understandably have questions, and we will be working closely alongside the Rail Accident Investigation Branch and the Office of Rail and Road to establish the full circumstances of how the train came to derail.”
Alex Hynes, Managing Director of Scotland’s Railway, said: “We are working closely and quickly with the emergency services on the incident near Stonehaven.
“Our thoughts are with those who have been affected by this tragic event, particularly the families of those who have lost their lives. The railway in Scotland is often referred to as a family, and it’s one that is hurting today.
“We have teams on site and we will do all we can to support everyone affected. We are working closely with all the relevant authorities to establish the cause of this incident.”
First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, has paid tribute to those affected. She Tweeted on Wednesday afternoon: “My deepest condolences are with the loved ones of those who lost their lives in this tragic incident. I have just been updated by Network Rail and the emergency services on the ongoing operation. My thanks go to them, and my thoughts remain with everyone affected.”
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said: “Our thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of those who have lost their lives and those who were injured in this tragic rail incident near Stonehaven this morning.
“I attended the SGoRR meetings earlier and have been provided with regular updates on this very serious situation and I will continue to keep up to date with the latest developments. I also plan to meet with some of the emergency responders tomorrow morning.
“I would like to thank all the engineers and emergency services who are responding to this incident and the challenging conditions they are dealing with at this time.”
The railway industry has come together in expressing its sadness of the incident.
Paul Plummer, Chief Executive of the Rail Delivery Group, which represents the rail industry, said: “We are saddened to learn about the incident in Aberdeenshire today and our thoughts are with those affected. While an investigation will follow, our current focus is to provide every support we can in the immediate response.”
TSSA has expressed its concern for those involved in the train derailment in Aberdeenshire. General Secretary Manuel Cortes said: “Our thoughts are with those caught up in this derailment, their loved ones and the emergency services and our members who are now involved in a rescue operation.
“It’s far too early to speculate on what may have been contributing factors to this morning’s tragic incident, but it is clear that every effort must be made to ensure the safety and integrity of our railway infrastructure and operations.”
HM Chief Inspector of Railways Ian Prosser CBE, said: “We are saddened by today’s incident and our thoughts are with the families and friends of those affected. ORR Inspectors are on site at Stonehaven, assisting in the preliminary investigation.
“We will work with other agencies, including the emergency services, to find out exactly what happened and identify the causes of this tragic incident.”
The Rail Accident Investigation Branch says an investigation into the derailment has been launched and they will provide an update in the coming days.
This article first appeared on www.railbusinessdaily.com
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