NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Aberdeen to Inverness train services 'returning to normal'

Cable theft
Image caption The second theft in three days is being investigated

Train services between Aberdeen and Inverness are returning to normal after repairs were completed to damaged cables following an attempted theft.

Network Rail said they had replaced about 800m of signalling cable which was cut overnight near Leith Hall, Kennethmont.

It followed the earlier theft of a mile of cable near Huntly.

The incidents have caused disruption for services on the stretch between Inverurie and Huntly.

Replacement buses were in operation.

British Transport Police officers were called to the rail line close to the B9002 after a report of a barrier failure in the area.

It was discovered that about a quarter of a mile of cable had been cut from a telegraph pole.

Ch Supt Ellie Bird, of BTP, said it was the second incident in three days in the same area, and explained: "Officers have stepped up their patrols in the location in order to identify those responsible.

"It is of particular concern that thieves are not aware of the dangers and continue to put their lives at risk by trespassing on the tracks and cutting live signalling cable.

"We have officers carrying out a full search of the track to gather any forensic evidence as well as viewing CCTV in and around the surrounding area.

She added: "As part of the investigation, I'd also like to hear from anyone who saw any suspicious activity in the Huntly and Kennethmont area over the past few days, or any vehicles which may have been close to the rail line."

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