Train derails in Scotland, 3 die

Photo: Associate Press

A passenger train derailed in northeast Scotland after stormy weather, killing three people and injuring six others Wednesday, authorities said.

The train’s driver is believed to be among the dead, but formal identification has yet to take place, the British Transport Police force said. Six people were hospitalised, but their injuries are not considered serious.

“I would like to reassure the public that this was not a busy service, and from (closed circuit television) inquiries and witness statements we believe all passengers have been accounted for,” British Transport Police chief superintendent Eddie Wylie said. “However, once the area has been made safe, then a full and thorough search will be conducted, which is likely to take some time.″

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon described the derailment as a “major″ incident and said she would be convening an emergency response meeting.

The transport police said officers were called at 9:43 a.m. (0843GMT) to the railway line near the coastal town of Stonehaven, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northeast of Edinburgh and south of Aberdeen.

Smoke could be seen billowing from the wreck. Photos showed that several cars of the four-carriage train had left the tracks and tumbled down an embankment. Air ambulances and coast guard helicopters came and went as the rescue operation unfolded.