Railway network is closed after man dies falling in front of train

SCENE Rowlands Castle railway station
SCENE Rowlands Castle railway station
A crash has led to delays on a major Portsmouth road

UPDATE: Man survives bridge fall onto the M27 near Whiteley

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VILLAGERS have spoken of their shock after a man died at a rural train station.

Trains into and out of Portsmouth were cancelled after the incident at Rowlands Castle station.

The driver of the 6.30pm South West Trains service from London Waterloo to Portsmouth Harbour called British Transport Police at 8.50pm on Friday to report the train had struck someone.

Emergency services were called to the station, in East Hampshire, but there was nothing they could do for the man, who has not been named by police.

Malcolm Cooper, who works in the village shop, said: ‘We didn’t quite believe it when people started coming in to the shop and saying someone had died.

‘Then I went out and saw the police, ambulances. It is a real shock.

‘You don’t imagine something like that happening in a sleepy little village like Rowlands Castle.

‘People have been talking about it in the shop.

‘Nobody seems to know what happened, or who the man was, but it’s really sad, whoever it was.’

And Simon Lee, a long-term village resident, said: ‘It’s very, very sad.

‘I pick my girls up from the station a lot and I know this sort of thing happens but it is always a shock and very upsetting.’

An immediate investigation was launched and the electricity to both tracks was turned off.

The incident led to major delays across the network.

Both lines had to be closed while police carried out their investigation.

Buses were laid on to take passengers to their destination.

There were knock-on effects throughout the night but the electricity was turned back on again, and trains started running, just after 9.10pm.

A transport police spokeswoman said: ‘On Friday April 1 British Transport Police and other emergency services attended Rowlands Castle railway station after a report that a person had been struck by a train.

‘Officers discovered that a male had been fatally injured after being struck by the 6.30pm London Waterloo to Portsmouth Harbour Service.

‘The incident has been declared as non suspicious.’

The man’s death comes 10 days after 17-year-old Jaefeus Harvey fell in front of a train at Bedhampton train station, two stops down.

The teenager, from Emsworth, had ambitions to join either the army or the police force. He died on March 22.