Five rail stations have been damaged after an out of train gauge carriage was dragged some 750km from Brisbane into New South Wales despite passing two safety inspections.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau today completed its investigation after five railway stations - between Coopers Plains and Wallarobba - were scraped and damaged by a dislodged train wagon between June 15 and 16 last year.

 

Footage from platforms showing the wagon contacting the platform at Dungog station.
Footage from platforms showing the wagon contacting the platform at Dungog station.

Footage from the journey shows sparks flying from the carriage as it grates against stations along its interstate journey.

The ATSB report cited "minor damage" to five stations - Dungog, Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Taree and Wingham - and identified that the wagon had become dislodged after being unloaded at a steel facility south of Brisbane.

A map showing the path of train 2BW4 and platform locations with footage from Taree and Dungog platforms showing the wagon contacting the platforms.
A map showing the path of train 2BW4 and platform locations with footage from Taree and Dungog platforms showing the wagon contacting the platforms.

The wagon (wagon RKOX4055Y) was unloaded at BlueScope Steel's Coopers Plains facility, where a forklift driver had trouble unloading a stack of welded beams.

A corner of the wagon lifted during the unloading process, before the wagon was attached to a Pacific National train (2BW4) for a journey to Port Kembla, the ATSB said.

No abnormalities were detected when the train departed.

Station staff at Grafton, in northern New South Wales, found damage to the station's platform, and the train was inspected again at Kempsey.

Footage showing the train wagon scraping a platform at Taree.
Footage showing the train wagon scraping a platform at Taree.

However, no faults were identified and the train continued its journey.

Workers at Dungog station noticed a wagon on the train was scraping the platform, and the train was directed to stop at Wallarobba.

On inspection, the wagon body on RKOX4055Y was found to have dislodged, and damage was also discovered at Coffs Harbour, Taree, and Wingham.

In response to the ATSB's investigation into the incident, BlueScope Steel and Pacific National completed several safety actions directed at preventing a reoccurrence.

Unloading procedures were revised to include the risk of lift off events and reinforced the requirement to unload welded beams from both sides.

Risk assessments were also reviewed to ensure all risk controls were current and included the risks associated with lift off events.

Originally published as Fiery photos: Sparking carriage dragged from Brisbane to NSW


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