Derailment halts SA-WA rail services

A freight train derailment in South Australia’s west has seriously damaged more than two kilometres of track, halting SA-WA rail services.

The intermodal train from Melbourne bound for Perth derailed on the rail line near Mount Christie in South Australia on Monday. 12 of the train’s wagons derailed, blocking the line.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has handed the site over to the Australian Rail and Track Corporation (ARTC) assessment team, who found the damage to the east and west end points was worse than expected.

“The extent of the ‘wagon fall’ from the derailment will require a significant recovery effort,” the ARTC said.

Over 2.2 kilometres of track and an additional 300 metres of track in another location was damaged, with some sections needing to be replaced.

The incident led to the cancellation of the scheduled passenger train services from Perth to Adelaide, with further cancellations expected.

The train’s operator Great Southern Rail said: “Guests booked to travel on the services are advised to contact us for updated information on service arrival and departure times.”

The ARTC said the damaged sections are expected to be open to traffic on Saturday.

“ARTC-led teams will work as swiftly as possible to remove the derailed wagons and repair the track,” it said.

It said an oncoming train was immediately halted and there were no injuries associated with the incident. 

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