Police inquiry after two die from electrocution on rail lines

Hackney Wick Rail Track. Pic: Nigel Thompson

The bodies of two people have been found dead on the train tracks running between Hackney Wick and Stratford. Police are investigating the cause of the deaths and why the victims were on the tracks,  but both are believed to have died from electrocution.

At 1:00 am yesterday morning, British Transport Police were called to the scene of an individual found dead on the tracks of the Overground Line between Hackney Wick and Stratford. Police, ambulance and fire engines attended the scene but the victim, who is reported to be a man in his 20s, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Later that morning, at 2:31 am, a second call was made to police about another body on the tracks near Stratford. Details on the second victim have not yet been released. Both casualties were pronounced dead at the scene and the British Transport Police said they had both sustained injuries consistent with electrocution.

Police were trying establish the identity of the victims so that their families can be notified.

Joseph Allchin, 35, a local resident with an overlooking flat, called the police after hearing an explosion and seeing flames.

He told The Standard: “I heard a loud explosion and went to the window and saw a fire on the tracks next to a stationary freight train. I thought it was a firework at first.”

“I was concerned because of the freight train. It had a large white canister, so I was worried it would blow up. The fire was igniting underneath the train. I thought someone had thrown something burning onto the tracks.”

Police believe the two individuals are connected, although there is an on going investigation to try and determine how the two individuals came to be on the tracks and why.

Detective Chief Inspector Tim Tubbs, from the British Transport Police, said: “An investigation is now underway to discover what happened and how these two people came to lose their lives on the railway.”

“At this time we are treating their deaths as unexplained as we make a number of urgent enquiries. I would ask anyone who was near Stratford or Hackney Wick last night, and saw something which they think might be relevant to contact us as soon as possible.”

Police are appealing for anyone with information to contact BTP by sending a text to 61016 or by calling 0800 40 50 40 quoting reference 23 of 21/03/19.

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