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Car crashes into Virgin train at level crossing in Lanarkshire

STV News understands the car turned on to the line and was dragged 80 yards.

By STV News

Published 03 Dec 2016.

A Virgin Voyager train has hit a car at a level crossing in South Lanarkshire.

It is thought the train dragged the vehicle 80 yards during the incident at the Cleghorn level crossing, shortly before 7pm on Saturday.

Services in the area have seen major disruption, with trains through Carluke and Carstairs cancelled or delayed.

Eyewitnesses said the car turned on to the railway by accident, and the occupants were able to get out before it was hit.

There are no casualties and the train, which was bound for Glasgow from Preston with 60 passengers on board, did not derail.

The car became lodged underneath the train. The car is understood to be a small hatchback similar to a Peugeot 107.

Engineers managed to remove the car from underneath the train using cutters after a number of hours. The train, which suffered minor damage in the crash, was taken back to Glasgow around 11pm with the passengers still on board.

The British Transport Police (BTP) said in a statement: "Just after 6.46pm we were called to Cleghorn level crossing in Lanark, Scotland following reports that a car was struck by a train.

"Officers from BTP and Police Scotland are on scene and are being supported by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

"Fortunately, all occupants of the vehicle were able to exit before it was struck by train. There are no reported injuries at this stage.

"Our priority is to ensure the safety of everyone on board the train and the vehicles occupants and look to understand how the car came to be on the tracks.

"Anyone with any information is asked to contact BTP by sending a text to 61016 or by calling 0800 40 50 40.

"The Rail Accidents Investigation Branch and Officer of Rail and Road have been notified."

Virgin Trains said the train had been bound for Glasgow.

A spokesman for the operator said: "The 4.41pm Virgin Trains service from Preston to Glasgow struck a vehicle at Cleghorn level crossing, between Carstairs and Motherwell.

"There are no reported injuries. Approximately 60 passengers were on the train and our teams are working with the emergency services to ensure they can continue their journeys safely."