At least six passengers died and 15 were seriously injured when a passenger train travelling from London to King's Lynn in Norfolk derailed at Potters Bar in Hertfordshire this afternoon.
At least six passengers died and 15 were seriously injured when a train travelling from London to King's Lynn in Norfolk derailed at Potters Bar in Hertfordshire this afternoon.
The four–carriage train was the 12.45pm West Anglia Great Northern service from Kings Cross. Three of the carriages derailed, according to Railtrack. Around 30 passengers were travelling in a carriage which ended on a platform at Potters Bar station.
The ambulance service said three of the injured had life-threatening injuries, and there up to 25 "walking wounded".
The final carriage hit a bridge over a road near the station as it derailed and was then flung at right angles across the track, coming to rest on the platform. The other three carriages travelled on for a further 400-500 yards before coming to a halt.
Although two carrriages were thought to have derailed, they remained upright and passengers were able to walk away from them. All the fatalities and serious injuries occurred when the last carriage jacknifed.
An eyewitness told Sky News how he was on the station platform as this carriage started slifing towards him. He said passengers were being thrown out of carriage as windows broke.
Another eyewitness Sam Irving told BBC News 24: "There were people lying on the track and various members of the public were comforting them. Some had terrible wounds. I saw at least two people who were dead. There was a lady who had blood pouring from her neck," he said.
Hairdresser Natasha Ellingham said: "When I ran down there (to the bridge) was a man lying on the floor and people were trying to help him. "I think he was a pedestrian because he was walking underneath.
"The fencing (of the bridge) was damaged because it had fallen down and had hit the cars."She added: "People were running up to platform, they were pulling people out of the train, it was horrendous, horrible. They were smashing the window trying to pull people out. Someone was walking up the platform to see if people had fallen out of the train," she said.
The train was probably travelling close to its maximum 100 mph speed. There were 151 passengers on board.
Ambulances from London and Essex also went to the scene. A nearby Sainsbury's store was closed and turned into a medical centre to treat less serious injuries.
The derailment was close to Hatfield where a GNER express came off the tracks in October 2000 in an accident which claimed four lives.
The emergency number for those who may have had relatives on the train is 0845 944 1551Reuse content