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12 October 2011, 11:34
British Transport Police are appealing for information after a passenger train struck a cycle thrown onto the tracks in Chandler's Ford.
The incident, which took place just after 8pm on Wednesday, 5 October, saw the 7.07pm Romsey to Salisbury South West Trains service strike a silver 'Challenger' mountain bike, which had been thrown onto the tracks near to Oakmount Road, next to the M3.
There were no reports of any injuries to passengers or staff onboard but the collision did cause substantial damage to fuel and braking components underneath the three carriages.
PC Chris Giles said:
"This criminal act, carried out for no apparent reason, damaged the train to such an extent that it had to be taken out of service in order to be repaired.
"Thankfully on this occasion no-one was injured but the consequences could have been far worse. Trains travel at high speeds and there is a very real risk when they strike objects on the track that they could be derailed.
"If you have any information that could help our investigation, weâ€™d like to hear from you."
A South West Trains spokesperson said: "This mindless act of vandalism caused serious damage to one of our trains and caused inconvenience to passengers travelling on that service.
"We would urge anybody with information about this incident to contact BTP."
Anyone with information should contact British Transport Police on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting reference B8/LSA of 12/11/10.