Mercury and Whitney streets in Telina were closed yesterday due to a train breaking down.
Mercury and Whitney streets in Telina were closed yesterday due to a train breaking down. Chrissy Harris

Coal train blocks crossings

COMMUTERS were met with flashing lights at two major railway crossings in Gladstone yesterday, as a huge coal train blocked both streets.

The crossings at Mercury and Whitney streets in Telina were blocked yesterday morning, after a Pacific National coal carrier stopped, blocking both roads about 7.40am.

An Asciano spokesperson said the coal train’s stopping was due to low fuel levels causing the locomotive’s automatic safety system to shut down.

“The train had been diverted to Barney Point for refuelling after speed restrictions on the track, due to heavy rains in the area.

“This caused congestion and excessive delays of up to three hours on its homeward journey,” the spokesperson said.

“The Pacific National emergency response crew responded quickly to the scene, and additional resources were brought in from Rockhampton to help assist clearing the area as quickly as possible.”

The spokesperson said this is the first time that Pacific National has experienced a fuel issue since its inception of operations in Queensland more than two years ago.

“Pacific National is undertaking an investigation to understand the cause and will ensure procedures are put in place to help avoid a similar occurrence in future,” the spokesperson said.

Police issued a traffic alert mid-morning and urged motorists to avoid the streets if possible.

The Whitney Street crossing was cleared by noon, while the Mercury Street crossing remained closed.



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