21 Feb 2020

Two dead as Sydney to Melbourne train derails

7:04 am on 21 February 2020

Two people were killed when a train with about 160 passengers on board derailed north of Melbourne.

The Sydney to Melbourne XPT service came off the rails near the town of Wallan, 45 kilometres north of Melbourne, Transport for NSW officials confirmed.

Five passenger cars were derailed and the locomotive turned on its side.

A Country Fire Authority (CFA) spokesperson said there were signs of significant damage to the train tracks and three medical helicopters were at the scene.

Emergency services were called about 7.45pm.

An Ambulance Victoria spokesperson said paramedics treated a number of people after the incident and one person was being airlifted to Melbourne.

One person was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital in a stable condition, while eight people were taken to the Northern Hospital with minor injuries.

Three were admitted to Kilmore Hospital with minor injuries.

V/Line train services have recently been disrupted on the line because of faults in the Wallan area.

'People started moving around, luggage went flying'

Dr Scott Rickard was in the second carriage of the train and said it was a scary experience.

"All of sudden, we just seemed to be slowing to a very fast stop," she said.

"Stuff flew off our tables, people started moving around, luggage went flying, that kind of thing.

"Our carriage finished on an angle."

Dr Rickard said she was stuck on the train for about 10 minutes after it derailed.

"There were people lying all over the place and we had to kind of make sure people weren't injured," she said.

She said people in her carriage only appeared to suffer minor injuries.

"Most of the carriage was fine - there were a lot of older people on the carriage so that was really reassuring to see that they've come out fine."

"It was maybe about 10 minutes before we got off but that was because we were just being very careful and making sure everybody was safe."