Four rescued from vehicle stuck on tracks just before train collision

Four rescued from vehicle stuck on tracks just before train collision
A level crossing on the rail line between Essen and Kapellen. Credit: Google Street View

Four men in Flanders whose car got stuck on the tracks in the middle of the night were pulled from the vehicle by rail workers moments before a freight train rammed into it.

A team of rail workers employed by Infrabel were in the vicinity of the vehicle when it got stuck, rushing to assist the drivers as the train approached.

The incident took place at 2:00 AM on Thursday at a level crossing between the Antwerp municipalities of Kapellen and Essen, near the Dutch border.

Nobody was injured but their vehicle was badly damaged by the oncoming train, and the driver was found to be under the influence of alcohol, according to De Standaard.

"In this case, the priority was given to freeing the four young people," Infrabel spokesperson, Frédéric Petit, told the outlet.

Petit said that the level crossing was functioning properly and that the incident was the result of a "careless manoeuvre," with a police officer saying that the four men were lost.

"From the first statements, we can conclude that they probably tried to turn back on the railroad," the officer said, according to De Standaard.

The incident paralysed rail traffic between the two municipalities for hours, with trains running again normally at around 8:00 AM.

Gabriela Galindo

The Brussels Times

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