Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Signal box man stuck in thunder box

Passengers were delayed on a train between Hereford and London after the signalman got stuck in a toilet

Rail passengers may have to get used to a new excuse for delays after trains were held up when a signalman got stuck in the toilet.

Travellers found themselves inconvenienced after contact was lost with the signal box at Henwick in Worcester, on the Hereford main line.

Trains cannot continue on to the city's Shrub Hill station without receiving a green light at Henwick, sited on a level crossing.

The driver of the 15.13 Hereford to London service, having heard nothing, got out of his train and walked to the signal box to see what the problem was.

It was then discovered the signalman was stuck in the Victorian building's outside toilet.

A Network Rail spokesman apologised for any inconvenience caused to passengers by the unusual episode on Wednesday February 6.

He said: "Much of the railway is still controlled from Victorian signal boxes, which often have outside loos.

"Our plans to modernise the railway will see control moved to state-of-the-art regional control centres, where unfortunate incidents such as this simply wouldn't be an issue.

"We apologise to anyone whose journey was delayed or disrupted as a result."

Network Rail said it had now asked its maintenance team to repair the toilet's lock.

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