A landslip yesterday (12 April) has resulted in all rail lines being blocked between Horsham and Dorking in Surrey.
Network Rail engineers have worked through the night to remove more than 20t of debris from the railway after a landslip at Holmwood in Surrey caused the line to be closed between Horsham and Dorking.
The landslip has caused an estimated 100tn of mud, grass and trees to come down onto the tracks – however the embankment remains unstable and further slippage has occurred as the debris is removed from the track.
In a statement Network Rail said an emergency response team has been on site since Thursday afternoon, when a small embankment slip was reported by a train driver. One line was able to be kept open initially, however further significant movement led to both lines being closed.
Network Rail engineers are using a range of equipment including a crane and road-rail vehicles to remove the spoil to the nearest access point more than 800m away. Once the spoil has been removed, the focus will turn to stabilising the embankment to enable to railway to reopen.
Network Rail interim chief operating officer Shaun King said: “Our team has worked hard through the night to remove more than 20tn of debris from the tracks, but there’s still a huge amount more to do. It’s a challenging location but we’re absolutely focused on getting the railway back open for Southern passengers as quickly and safely as possible.”
In a statement, the rail operator Southern said they were “working very closely with Network Rail who have assessed the site of the landslip.
”Network Rail have been working continuously through the night to remove the soil and debris. Whilst work is progressing on schedule, the line will be closed for the remainder of the day. Approximately 100tn of material has been removed from site with a further 200tn still in the process of being removed.”
It is hoped the line will reopen tomorrow (14 April).