HORSHAM rail passsengers faced long delays last night after a man crawled under a train near Thornton Heath, London.
Some complained that Horsham trains were still running late at 10:30pm, five hours after the incident occurred at around 5:30pm.
The incident began after Network Rail (NR) received reports at 5.15pm last night, during peak period, of a trespasser on the tracks on the London side of Thornton Heath station.
All trains in the area were ordered to slow and proceed with caution.
At 5.30pm the driver of the 17.02 Epsom to Victoria service spotted the man on the line and stopped.
To the driver’s amazement the man then walked towards the train and climbed underneath.
The power was then cut off to allow British Transport Police (BTP) access.
They struggled to get the man out and onto the train where he had to be sedated by paramedics.
The 22-year-old was then detained under the Mental Health Act.
A Southern Rail spokesperson said: “We would like to apologise to passengers for the disruption to services last night. This was caused by a trespasser on the tracks in the Thornton Heath area at 17:40.
“As with any trespass incident, we had to turn off the electricity on the tracks, and were only able to restore power to all four lines just after 20:00.
“Delays were lengthened by a small number of passengers who chose to get off their train and walk to Norbury station. Their actions just as the power was ready to be switched on, not only endangered their lives but extended delays for everyone else by an additional hour.
“We would like to thank the majority of our passengers for their patience during a very frustrating incident.”