York & North Yorkshire

Flaxby rail crossing crash tractor driver sentenced

Tractor on level crossing in North Yorkshire Image copyright British Transport Police
Image caption British Transport Police said it was "astounding" no-one had been seriously injured or killed in the crash

A man who drove a tractor into the path of a train has been ordered to complete 150 hours unpaid work.

No-one was seriously injured when the passenger train hit the tractor at a level crossing near Flaxby in North Yorkshire in May 2015.

Andrew Doney, 22, of Moorside Drive, Ripon, had pleaded guilty to endangering the safety of rail users.

British Transport Police said the incident had caused significant disruption to the rail network.

Read more about this and other stories from across York and North Yorkshire

Ch Insp Glen Alderson of British Transport Police said: "It is astounding that no-one was seriously injured or killed in this incident."

He said the crash had closed the railway and adjacent roads for several hours and the incident cost Northern Rail £114,000 and Network Rail £3,660.

York Crown Court heard Doney had opened the gate at the Oakwood Farm Crossing at Flaxby on 14 May without following correct procedures.

He had then driven the tractor into the path of the Harrogate to York service.

The train was travelling at 65mph (105km/h) and had 66 passengers and three train crew onboard.

The driver, who had applied the emergency brake after seeing the tractor, suffered whiplash and back injuries and had been unable to work for more than five months due to the psychological trauma he had suffered.

Doney was also ordered to pay £300 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites