More than 30 passengers and staff on board a passenger train travelling between Moree and Narrabri were forced to evacuate on Monday morning after the train struck a metal object, resulting in a spillage near Edgeroi.
The explorer train service from Moree to Sydney reportedly struck a metal object on the line about 8km north of Edgeroi which resulted in the rupture of its diesel and coolant tanks.
Narrabri Fire and Rescue firefighters were confronted with 500 litres of diesel and 200 litres of coolant spread over approximately 200 metres when they attended the scene.
All 35 passengers and staff had to vacate the train as the engines had to be shut down, preventing the operation of the air conditioning and toilet facilities.
Due to the height between the train and the ground, firefighters had to set up ladders to allow passengers to safely exit the train utilising a NSW Rural Fire Service tanker and a life rescue line as handrails.
Fortunately nobody was injured in the incident, however each passenger was required to be assisted by two firefighters when exiting the train to ensure maximum safety at all times.
Those who could not walk from the train were removed by a ladder slide technique allowing them to lay inside a stokes litter and be lowered by firefighters down the ladder to the ground.
All passengers were checked over by NSW Ambulance paramedics to ensure all were in good health prior to making their way to an awaiting coach that was to take the place of the train for the rest of the trip.
The spillage was rendered safe by ARTC response crews and Fire and Rescue NSW firefighters.
Fire and Rescue praised all those involved during the protracted, drawn out incident.