The London Fire Brigade has praised the quick actions of a train driver who ‘narrowly averted a disaster’ by bringing his train to an emergency stop shortly after a lorry crashed into a bridge in Dulwich.
The lorry collided with the railway bridge on Village Way in Dulwich only narrowly missing the oncoming train full of passengers.
The mechanical grab section of a builders’ lorry broke off and landed on the track after the vehicle hit a rail bridge.
Station Manager Richard Knighton said:
The lorry has smashed into the bridge and the ‘grabber’ on top has gone onto the track. The train driver has quickly seen it and jumped on the emergency brakes which has narrowly escaped a potential disaster. The track has also been damaged so there was also the possibility of a derailing.
He added that ‘Thankfully no one was injured and all 89 passengers were safely transferred onto another train.’
The Brigade was called at 11.25 this morning and the incident was over by 1.24 pm.
Fire crews from West Norwood and Lewisham fire stations attended the scene.
Passengers Tweeted their concern about how they could get off.
The London Ambulance Service has been on standby, but there are no reports of casualties.
A Southern Rail UK spokesperson said:
The impact was such that part of the bridge parapet and part of the crane itself fell on to the railway, causing a short circuit and stopping a nearby Southern train. The train was travelling slowly at the time and stopped short of the incident.
As the damage to the bridge was being assessed by engineers Southern Rail UK announced that all services between London Bridge to West Croydon and vice versa & London Bridge to Beckenham Junction and vice versa were suspended ‘until further notice.’
However, services have now been resumed with speed restrictions.
An engineer was at the site inspecting the bridge further.
The London Fire Brigade used a ladder so that their firefighters could access the track and bridge.
The passengers have been transferred to a train brought up alongside on the other line.