A rail track left on the railway following engineering work was hit by a passenger train, according to the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) who have issued further guidance to Network Rail.
On 25 February 2018, a Virgin Trains East Coast service bound for London departed from Inverness on the journey south, hitting a piece of discarded track that had been left on the line after engineering work. Fortunately, the train did not derail, and suffered no damage, however this could easily have resulted in a different outcome.
ScotRail Alliance, which Network Rail Scotland is part of, has undertaken a full investigation and has taken steps to ensure employees are aware of the situation and the serious nature of the incident.
There were three incidents similar to this in England between 2014 and 2017.
It is vital that employees are properly supervised and that risk assessments and final checks are carried out when work is completed - especially when there is such a high risk to life.