East-west line to be reopened ahead of schedule

ARTC says damaged rail line in South Australia will be reopened ahead of schedule

A rail track on the east-west line in South Australia is expected to be reopened ahead of schedule as clean up crews remove the remainder of the wreckage.

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) states the rail line will be operating late this evening instead of the original prediction of Saturday afternoon.

A statement from the ARTC says the final wagons will be removed by midday while repair teams work through to this evening to open the line.

The 12-wagon derailment damaged 300 metres of rail track west of the west end points and over 2km on the east side of the east end turnout.

The extensive damage forced trains to slow to 20km/h when approaching the east end turnout.

The incident happened on Monday night near Mount Christie between Tarcoola and Cook.

The Western Australian-bound freight train derailed about 20 metres before a passing loop and fell either side of the track, blocking the line.

"Following an assessment of the accident it was discovered that the west end points had been severely damaged and in need of replacement," according to a statement from the ARTC.

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