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Witness describes miracle as motorist unhurt after train crashes into car in Johnstone

© Paisley PhotographsDamage to the car after the incident
Damage to the car after the incident

A motorist had a miraculous escape yesterday after a train smashed into his car after he had crashed onto railway tracks.

A witness told how she and another passerby tried to free the man before they had to flee when the rails began to vibrate as a train approached the car at Janefield Avenue, Johnstone, Renfrewshire, at Shanks Crescent at 6am. The train hit the rear of the car, spinning it around, with the driver still inside.

Susan Oliver, who lives nearby, told The Sunday Post: “I was woken just after 6am by banging on my front door. A man was saying a car had crashed through the barrier at the end of the street, careering down an embankment crossing onto railtrack.

“I dialled 999 and we went to see if we could help. The car had crashed into an embankment with the back end over the rails. The driver was the only person inside and was unresponsive when we tried to get him out.

“It was then we felt the rails vibrating and realised a train was on its way. It sounded its horn but it was travelling too fast to stop and it hit the back of the car.

“Thankfully, the train came to a halt just down the track.”

© Andrew Cawley
The car crashed through a barrier, careering down an embankment.
© Paisley Photographs
It almost, but not quite, cleared the tracks before stopping. An oncoming train then hit the back of it spinning it around

Susan, 32, a support worker, said: “It’s a miracle the car driver hasn’t been killed.”

None of the nine people on the train was injured. The car driver, understood to be in his thirties, was being assessed in hospital yesterday.

British Transport Police said: “Officers were called following reports that a car had collided with a train. Paramedics attended and the driver was taken to hospital. Thankfully his injuries are not believed to be life threatening. Inquiries are ongoing.”

The Scottish Fire Service said: “We sent nine appliances and firefighters removed the driver from the car before transferring them into the care of paramedics. There were no other casualties.”

The track reopened about 10.30am.