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Collision at level crossing

A woman has been airlifted to hospital after her vehicle collided with a northbound Wairarapa commuter train at 10.15 yesterday morning.

The crash, which happened at a level crossing on Norfolk Rd in the Carterton District, closed the intersection between SH2 and Norfolk Rd for at least two hours, while the section of Norfolk Rd from the railway crossing remained closed for a further two hours.

Wellington Free Ambulance confirmed the woman was transported to Palmerston North Hospital in a serious condition by the Palmerston North Rescue Helicopter.

Masterton and Carterton Fire Brigade, which responded to the collision with two trucks, confirmed the woman had been trapped in the vehicle.

No one else was in the vehicle.

KiwiRail Executive General Manager Operations Paul Ashton confirmed none of the eight passengers or five crew onboard the train were injured.

Passengers were safely escorted off the train and moved to Masterton via an arranged bus service replacement.

Ashton told the Times-Age the train remained at the scene while the locomotive and track were inspected and was later expected to continue on to Masterton.

“The level crossing, which has flashing lights and warning bells, suffered extensive damage,” Ashton said.

Carterton District Council [CDC] advised that, as a result of the accident, the railway signals were not working on both Norfolk Rd and Norman Ave.

“The Norfolk Road signals could take up to three months to be repaired by KiwiRail. The Norman Avenue signals are anticipated to be repaired within a week,” a CDC spokesperson said.

Several Wairarapa Line services were replaced by buses.

Police said enquiries into the circumstances of the collisions are ongoing.

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