Lucky to be alive


By Jessica Anstice

An elderly couple, two children and their dad are lucky to be alive after a train slammed into their cars along the Pakenham line in Officer on Monday 15 July.

A car was stopped at the boom gates for about 30 seconds on Brunt Road when it was rear-ended by a silver commodore travelling at around 60km/h.

It is believed the driver of the second vehicle had turned around to speak to his son in the backseat.

As a result, both vehicles ended up on the railway tracks in the path of the oncoming train.

The driver of the first vehicle, a 70-year-old woman and her partner, a 68-year-old man and the three occupants of the second vehicle, a 45-year-old man and his two boys aged nine and 12 quickly escaped their vehicles and fled the track.

They were able to move out of the way, however both cars were struck, with one being pushed into the boom gates and ending up on the opposite side of the intersection.

The second car was pushed about 150m and became lodged beneath the train.

Emergency services attended the scene at 7.44am.

Two passengers from the first car were taken to hospital with minor injuries and shock.

The young boys were picked up by their mother and taken by ambulance to Casey Hospital in relation to whiplash.

Both parties were Officer residents, living just one street away from each other nearby the tracks.

The 84 train passengers and two drivers were not injured and evacuated safely.

Trains are currently stopped in the area and motorists are advised to expect delays.

The line is closed between Officer and Pakenham, with replacement buses arriving.

Metro has ordered 30 buses with an extended journey time of 30 minutes.

The line had just reopened, after being closed for a week of works.

The investigation is ongoing.


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