‘Serious injuries’ after passenger train derails near Stonehaven during storms

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Serious injuries have been reported after a passenger train derailed near Stonehaven in Aberdeenshire as storms caused disruption across Scotland.

A major incident has been declared and about 30 emergency service vehicles – including air ambulance support – have been called to the scene.

Smoke was seen coming from the area.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon described it as an “extremely serious incident” and said there were early reports of “serious injuries”.

Speaking in the Scottish Parliament, she said: “My immediate thoughts, and the thoughts of those across the chamber, are with all those involved.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “I am saddened to learn of the very serious incident in Aberdeenshire and my thoughts are with all of those affected. My thanks to the emergency services at the scene.”

The chief executive of Network Rail, Andrew Haines, is cutting short his family holiday in Italy.

He will fly back to the UK on Wednesday afternoon and then head to the site.

The incident took place at Carmont near Stonehaven as torrential rain and thunderstorms caused flooding and travel disruption across many parts of central and eastern Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon said the derailment had happened in “a very difficult location for emergency services to access”.

She added: “I know and appreciate that there will be many families who will be anxious if they believe they had relatives who were on that train.

“We will do everything we can to make sure the emergency services are supported, that families are supported.”

The train was made up of two locomotives – at the front and back – and four carriages.

It is understood that the front locomotive and three passenger carriages have left the track and are now sitting on an embankment.

British Transport Police said its officers had been called to the scene of the derailment at about 09:43.

A few minutes later, Network Rail tweeted that there had been reports of a landslip at Carmont.

NHS Grampian confirmed it was on a “major incident footing”, and ScotRail said it was assisting the emergency services.

Kevin Lindsay, the Scottish organiser for train drivers’ union Aslef, said: “We are aware that this is an extremely serious incident and our thoughts are with everyone involved.”

The RMT union’s Mick Lynch said: “The facts behind this ‎incident will need to be established in due course, but at this stage we are focussed on support and assistance and our thoughts are with all those impacted by this tragedy.”


‘There was a strong billowing of smoke’

By David Shanks, BBC Scotland reporter

The scene is about four miles from Stonehaven in an incredibly rural location.

Around us are green fields and forest, and just beyond is a line of trees. There is a gully where you can see a small wisp of smoke coming out from behind the trees.

When we arrived there was a strong billowing of smoke where we believe that the train derailed.

Just to the right there are dozens of police, fire and ambulance vehicles.

In the past half an hour there have been a number of vehicles whizzing past us at pace.

We don’t know how many people are injured or how badly. Details are still emerging.


Are you in the area? Did you witness the incident? If it is safe to do so please share your experiences by emailing haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk.

Please include a contact number if you are willing to speak to a BBC journalist.

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