East Sussex railway incident: 'Fire on the tracks' brings trains to a standstill

Trains were unable to run between Brighton and Lewes after a fire broke out on the tracks, Southern Rail has said.
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Southern reported around 8pm on Sunday (October 15) that there was a ‘problem currently under investigation’ on the line between Brighton and Lewes.

"We're unable to run trains between these stations until further notice,” a statement on X (formerly Twitter) read.

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"If you're on a train that has been at a stand for some time please remain on board and listen to on-board announcements for the latest information.

“If you haven't started your journey, please delay travelling until later, once the line has reopened.

“If you travel now, then you'll need to use an alternative route and allow at least an extra 30 minutes to complete your journey.”

Train tickets were being accepted on Brighton & Hove Buses whilst the incident was ongoing.

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In an update at 8.20pm, Southern said a train came to a stand in the Lewes area ‘following a possible fire on the tracks and then a loss of power’.

Southern Rail train. Photo: Stock image / National WorldSouthern Rail train. Photo: Stock image / National World
Southern Rail train. Photo: Stock image / National World

A spokesperson added: “Network Rail colleagues are en-route and will be investigating this as soon as possible, but in the meantime we cannot run through the area.”

Services were back up and running at 8.40pm – but ‘at a reduced speed’. As a result, services were delayed by up to 30 minutes and some services were altered or cancelled.

At 9.10pm, Southern wrote: “Trains can now run at normal speed on all lines. The next service to depart Lewes will be the 21:21 to Brighton. Please note this service may be delayed by up to 15 minutes.”

Train services were back to normal by 10pm.