ABERDEENSHIRE, SCOTLAND — A train has derailed in Aberdeenshire, northeastern Scotland, in what the country’s First Minister describes as an “extremely serious incident.”
The derailment occurred on Wednesday morning on the line at Stonehaven, British Transport Police (BTP) said in a tweet.
Speaking to the Scottish Parliament on Wednesday afternoon, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said there had been early reports of serious injuries and mentioned that the area had suffered from significant storms.
“Officers were called to the scene at 9.43am and remain there alongside paramedics and the fire brigade,” BTP wrote.
The derailment is an “extremely serious incident,” Sturgeon tweeted. “I’ve had an initial report from Network Rail and the emergency services and am being kept updated. All my thoughts are with those involved.”
A spokesperson for the hospital dealing with casualties has said it is on “major incident footing.”
Rail industry sources told the PA news agency that the suspected cause of the incident was a landslip. Andrew Bowie, the local Member of Parliament, said that Stonehaven had experienced flooding on Wednesday after “heavy rain.”
Network Rail Scotland had posted a video earlier on Wednesday showing a landslip on the track at Carmont, believed to be close to the scene of the crash.
Photos show there were at least six ambulance vehicles, an air ambulance, and a number of police cars at the site, the PA Media news agency reports.
Video from the scene showed smoke billowing in the background.
Railway maintenance authority NetworkRail Scotland said it was working with emergency services.
“It is too early to confirm the exact nature and severity of the incident and more details will be made available once known,” it said in a tweet.
British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said he has had an urgent meeting with Network Rail about the incident.
“The UK Government will provide every support. My thoughts are with those involved and their families,” tweeted Shapps.