Safety, Standards & Regulation

Bureau to investigate Whyalla Steelworks runaway

Federal investigators will look into the six-kilometre runaway of a bulk freight train through the Whyalla Steelworks in South Australia earlier this week.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau said this week it is investigating a reported runaway within the Liberty Primary Steel complex at Whyalla on the morning of July 31.

According to the investigation brief, an empty iron ore train operated by Genesee & Wyoming Australia was being prepared for departure when it ran approximately six kilometres through the complex without a driver onboard, before it could be stopped and secured.

Fortunately, no injuries were reported, and no damage was dealt to the train or the surrounding infrastructure.

The ATSB said it will review locomotive data logger information, obtain information about the remote control system used on the locomotive, and interview the train driver and other rail operations personnel.

A final report is expected in the third quarter of 2020.