Signalling problem diverts train

A SIGNALLING problem at Colchester caused an InterCity express train from London to Norwich to head for Clacton.The 18:00 service from Liverpool Street on Monday was already running late because of problems at Chelmsford when it was routed onto the Essex coast line north of Colchester.

A SIGNALLING problem at Colchester caused an InterCity express train from London to Norwich to head for Clacton.

The 18:00 service from Liverpool Street on Monday was already running late because of problems at Chelmsford when it was routed onto the Essex coast line north of Colchester.

The packed Anglia Railways express, which does not stop at Colchester, headed through platform one towards the underpass north of the station and on its way to Wivenhoe on the Clacton line.

But once the driver realised that he was on the wrong track, he halted the locomotive powered train which was then further delayed.


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Stuart Jackson from Woodbridge, a regular commuter on the service, said: "We came to a shuddering halt and were told the signalman had misrouted us onto the Clacton line. The safety implications are frankly frightening."

However, Peter Meades, a spokesman for Anglia Railways, stressed there was no danger to the dangers. "The driver followed full safety procedures.

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"He sought permission from the signal staff to reverse the train back into Colchester and once the points were changed, the service proceeded to Manningtree, Ipswich and Norwich."

Mr Meades said three of the company's services had been affected by a signalling blip at the Witham box, which controls the section of line north of Chelmsford.

"The 18:00 was delayed for 27 minutes outside Chelmsford when the driver realised that a sudden change in signal colour meant the train should be halted.

"He took all proper safety precautions, seeking permission from the Witham control to proceed. This was a technical malfunction but there was no danger to passengers."

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