UK & World News

  • 13 February 2014, 11:53

Trains Running Again After Storm 'Disaster'

Train services are slowly getting back to normal after fierce winds turned many journeys into a nightmare on Wednesday night.

Some passengers travelling to and from the storm-hit North West were stranded for up to eight hours.

Virgin Trains urged customers to "abandon travel" and tweeted that "multiple trees" had fallen on overhead lines.

One angry passenger, Peter Price, stranded for hours near Crewe, recorded his thoughts during his travel nightmare.

"We left London eight hours ago - sadly on the train - there has been absolute bedlam without any shadow of a doubt," said a frustrated Mr Price.

"We've just left the train after eight hours because we've been told the diesel that came to push us has broken down."

Another passenger told Sky News: "It was a catalogue of disasters really. There were two fires - one at Rugby, one at Crewe. A train hit a tree, there were other trees on the line.

"There was a lightning strike that took out some signals. There were engineering works, and we had to run at 50mph because of the strong winds."

East Coast trains were also badly affected by the ferocious winds, with trees down on the line and the company tweeting about "large disruptions" and "overhead line issues".

Passenger Michael Stowe also recorded his experiences as he sat stranded and covered in a silver foil blanket.

He said: "(I've) been waiting about four and a half hours now outside of Darlington. The winds brought down overhead cables and that's obviously left the train stranded."

Antonia Goddard, also on the train, told Sky News she had been waiting hours to be rescued.

"We were told there was no power for the train. We've been on emergency lights and there's no heating," said Ms Goddard.

The travel picture is much improved on Thursday morning but some problems remain in the north of England, said Sky News' Joe Tidy at London King's Cross station.

Commuters are being urged to check the latest information with their rail company and National Rail's Twitter account.

Virgin said: "All services are subject to heavy delays, diversions and cancellations."

The company has lifted ticket restrictions to help passengers and is also accepting tickets issued by other train operators.

At Paddington station in London, many morning commuters appeared to have heeded yesterday's warning and stayed away.

Staff said things were "running smoothly" and they had not had to deal with many customer complaints.

Lines still affected by disruption include Preston to Lancaster - where a tree is blocking the line, and Leeds to Wakefield Westgate and Doncaster, which has minor delays.

But trains are now running normally between Stafford and Wolverhampton following overhead wire problems, and between Liverpool and Crewe.

Fallen trees and power cable damage has also closed lines in Wales, including between Blaenau Ffestiniog and Llandudno Junction; Carmarthen and Fishguard Harbour; and Shrewsbury to Aberystwyth.

Keep up to date with the latest information on the storm and floods with Sky News Live Updates.

 :: Watch Sky News live on television, on Sky channel 501, Virgin Media channel 602, Freeview channel 82 and Freesat channel 202.

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