RAIL repair works are now underway at the site of a train collision and derailment in Marmor, Queensland.

An Aurizon coal train and a Pacific National freight train collided on Sunday night (29 January) after the freight train derailed.

The rail corridor between Gladstone and Rockhampton – part of Aurizon’s Central Queensland Coal Network – was subsequently closed.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau and the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator are investigating the incident.

“At about 1902 local time, while travelling on the main line, a Pacific National freight train (82P7) derailed and subsequently collided with an Aurizon coal train (9F02) on the adjacent track,” ATSB wrote in an investigation notice.

“As part of the investigation, the ATSB will interview involved parties, analyse event recorder data, and examine rolling stock and maintenance records.”

The ATSB has released the site to the track operator, enabling recovery works to get underway.

“After deploying on Monday to the site of Sunday night’s derailment at Marmor, Queensland, ATSB investigators released the site to the track operator on Tuesday afternoon,” an ATSB spokesperson said.

“Along with evidence gathered from on-site activities, investigators placed protection orders on several train components, which will be further analysed at engineering facilities in Brisbane.”

In a statement on Wednesday (1 February) Aurizon said recovery work had begun, involving the removal of damaged rollingstock, repair of overhead power and electrical masts and the restoration of the track infrastructure.

It said the scope of recovery works is “significant” and will involve replacing two kilometres of rail, inserting more than 2000 new concrete sleepers and laying down 2300 tonnes of ballast.

Recovery will also include replacing at least 12 electrical masts and 1.5 kilometres of each of four types of overhead wire.

“Rail crews together with external contractors have been mobilised to work 24/7 on the recovery, ensuring the work is delivered safely and within all fatigue requirements,” Aurizon said.

It estimates the track will re-open to rail traffic by Thursday 9 February.

“This is subject to weather conditions allowing recovery work to continue unimpeded and any other unforeseen damage/issues emerging through the recovery process.”

Aurizon said it is liaising with customers on the delivery of the recovery works.

And the ATSB said it will publish a final report at the conclusion of the investigation. It anticipates the investigation will be complete in the third quarter of 2023.