A MAJOR investigation has been launched after a deliberate obstruction forced a train to derail at Inverkeilor on Sunday causing travel chaos for Arbroath and the wider area.
British Transport Police (BTP) say officers found an obstruction on the tracks, which they believe may have been placed there on purpose.
The train, the 8.04 a.m. service from Edinburgh to Aberdeen, had just left Arbroath and was approaching Inverkeilor at around 9.45 a.m. when the front wheels derailed.
Fortunately, none of the 36 passengers onboard were injured during the incident although the driver suffered a knock to the head and was treated by paramedics.
And now BTP have confirmed they are stepping up high profile patrols in the area and are asking anybody with information to come forward.
Detective Inspector Kevin McCormack of British Transport Police said: “Fortunately, no-one was seriously injured during the incident and we now believe that the object found at the scene of the derailment must have been put there intentionally by someone.
“I am therefore anxious to speak with anyone who saw anyone acting suspiciously in the area of Inverkeilor between Saturday night (November 3) and Sunday morning (November 4).”
After the incident on Sunday morning, an investigation into the cause of the derailment was launched by BTP, Tayside Police and the rail authorities.
And in a statement, operating company of the service CrossCountry, said: “The front wheels of the train became derailed, but the train remained upright. There were 36 passengers and two crew members on board. There were no reports of any injuries.
“Emergency services attended the site along with rail personnel. Arrangements were made to take passengers from the train and on to their destinations.
“A full investigation will be undertaken to determine the cause of the incident.”
The derailment caused the line to be out of action for most of Sunday and all day on Monday meaning major travel disruption.
Passengers travelling to or from Arbroath were forced to use a bus replacement service to either Dundee or Montrose, adding up to 60 minutes on to some journeys.
The line fully re-opened again on Tuesday morning.
An incident vehicle remains at the scene of the incident, where members of the public can attend with any information they feel may be relevant.
British Transport Police can also be contacted on 0800 40 50 40 or information can be given anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.