Giant tortoise on track halts trains in England
Agence France-Presse / 04:32 PM August 02, 2022
LONDON — A large tortoise on the track caused trains to come to a halt in southeastern England, a rail company informed frazzled travelers Monday.
Greater Anglia rail company tweeted that trains between the city of Norwich and Stansted Airport were stopped for more than an hour due to a “giant tortoise”.
The operator first announced the line was blocked by “animals on the railway” early on Monday afternoon.
One passenger on a train to Norwich, Diane Akers, posted a photo of the tortoise standing on the track just after noon, reporting to the train company: “it’s still alive but injured”.
The tortoise’s shell appeared to have a large gash on top.
“I couldn’t believe my eyes to be honest!” Akers wrote.
A Greater Anglia customer adviser called Georgie later wrote that the tortoise was injured and had been taken to a specialist team for treatment.
“We have been informed that he will make a full recovery,” the adviser updated.
One passenger, Lydia Jane White, tweeted: “‘Train delayed because of a giant tortoise, too heavy to lift, stuck on the train tracks after having escaped from a local wildlife centre’ is not something I thought I’d ever hear from a train driver!”.
The railway line reopened around 1.5 hours later, while knock-on delays were predicted.
The bizarre delay came as UK passengers have experienced several days of train strikes this summer as railway employees’ trade unions demand pay rises reflective of inflation.