Intercity train is derailed by landslide

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The Independent Online

A London to Cardiff train carrying hundreds of passengers was derailed by a landslide in atrocious weather last night.

A London to Cardiff train carrying hundreds of passengers was derailed by a landslide in atrocious weather last night.

Passengers were left trapped in a tunnel when the 4.30pm service from Paddington came off the tracks outside Bristol about 6.30pm.

It hit a tree which a landslide had brought down over the rails, following about two hours of torrential rain.

The locomotive came off the rails and carried eight carriages into the tunnel, where passengers had to wait until emergency services arrived.

Police said that most of the passengers had been taken safely off the train by 10pm last night and no serious injuries were reported.

An Avon and Somerset police spokesman said the accident happened when the locomotive of the intercity 125 train hit debris from the landslide.

The train's eight carriages continued into the short Patchway tunnel, under a feeder road on to the A38 road, which was subsequently closed off.

The fire and ambulance services and British Transport Police were attempting to detach the derailed front engine so the undamaged rear engine could pull the carriages out, the spokesman added.

Passengers were taken to coaches and then to the sports hall of nearby Patchway High School after they were freed from the train, he said.

The landslide followed heavy rain across the south west of England, which was causing flooding in several areas.

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