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Train crash and passengers hitching the hill

Train passengers were forced to trek up and over the Remutaka Hill when their replacement bus broke down near the summit.

The breakdown came hours after a train collided with a milk tanker at a level crossing on Matarawa Rd, in Dalefield at 8.20am on Saturday.

Police said emergency services attended the crash, and no one was injured.

The flow-on effect of the blocked train line saw commuters on a rail-replacement bus scaling the Remutaka Hill after the bus broke down.

A trip that should have taken passenger Daniel Boerman one hour ended up taking about two hours, and included hitching a ride with police to reach his destination.

Metlink said the bus engine overheated, so passengers walked up the hill, where the bus collected them again after being restarted.

Boerman said they walked for about 30 minutes on the state highway, which did not have a safe area for people to walk.

“The bus was meant to take us to Upper Hut [to transfer to a train], but then last minute, they said it was going to go all the way to Masterton because

Grace Prior
Grace Prior
Grace Prior is a senior reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age with a keen interest in environmental issues. Grace is the paper’s health reporter and regularly covers the rural sector, weather, Greater Wellington Regional Council, and coastal stories.

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