Man Injured After Train Hits His Car on Level Crossing At Littleport

PUBLISHED: 17:18 19 October 2008 | UPDATED: 10:35 04 May 2010

POOL players at a Littleport pub were astonished to glance out of the window and see a man being hit by a train on Friday night. Customers at the Black Horse Pub in Padnal Bank, rushed out to try to help a young man in his 20s, trapped

POOL players at a Littleport pub were astonished to glance out of the window and see a man being hit by a train on Friday night.

Customers at the Black Horse Pub in Padnal Bank, rushed out to try to help a young man in his 20s, trapped in his dark coloured saloon car on the level crossing, in pitch dark at around 11.30pm as the late-night King’s Lynn train approached.

The barriers had gone down to let service from King’s Cross pass, but it is thought that the car driver ignored the barriers and tried to weave across the track. Other customers of the Black Horse Pub maintain there was a signal failure at the level crossing, which is two minutes from Littleport station.

Luckily the car had already spun and come to a stop, meaning the train, which had slowed down to 60mph to prepare for its scheduled stop at the station, clipped the back of the vehicle. As soon as the train driver came to a stop, he called police, who had already received six calls from members of the public. The 30 passengers travelling on the train were unhurt, but the man had to be cut from his car by the fire service.

Austrian-born Harild Rauch, landlord of the Black Horse, said he had never seen anything like it in the year that he had been in Littleport. “Pedestrians occasionally try and jump the barriers, but I have never seen a car do it – local people know that when the barriers go down here, you have only ten or twenty seconds before the train arrives, so to try to jump the barrier, that is really suicidal. There are conflicting reports of what happened from my customers so we will await the official investigation.”

The man was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital and his injuries are not thought to be life-threatening.

“He had his guardian angels with him that day,” said Mr Rauch, who also praised the emergency services for their quick response.

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