GPS directions take driver onto rail track

Faulty GPS directions are being blamed for a nasty smash involving a train and a car on the rail tracks in Mol (Antwerp Province) last night. The driver followed GPS directions that took him over the rails instead of turning right and avoiding them.

The motorist made fruitless efforts to reverse and vacate the tracks. When the bell sounded warning of the arrival of a train the driver left his car standing on the rails and got to safety.

Moments later a passenger train from Mol to Hamont (Limburg Province) failed to stop in time and ploughed into the vehicle carrying it along for several metres. The car was smashed into an electricity box. Both vehicle and box were severely damaged.

Some ten people were on the train at the time. Nobody was injured and they were soon ferried to a station from where they were able to continue their journey.

"Make sure you're safe first!"

Rail track operator Infrabel acknowledged the scale of the damage. Several Infrabel teams had to attend the scene. By 6:35AM the damage had been repaired and rail travel could resume.

The company urges drivers who find themselves in a similar position to make sure they are safe first and then contact the police. The police can contact Traffic Control that can get any approaching train to halt in its tracks.