ENGINEERS will be unable to move a derailed maintenance train until the weekend.

The two-carriage tamper locomotive is stranded above an embankment close to Scours Lane, Tilehurst, after coming off the tracks shortly after 10pm last Friday. [22]

The engine was laying gravel - known as track ballast - under the railway sleepers when the accident happened.

A crew from Caversham Road fire station isolated the railway points, while the "shaken" driver was taken to the Royal Berkshire Hospital and later released.

Network Rail contractors dispatched rail-based cranes to recover the train the following evening but they were unable to dislodge it because of the steep slope.

On Monday company spokesman Russell Spink said its engineers were still looking into the possible of launching a salvage operation from the road, and said: "It's a steep embankment and it's making life a little difficult to get it back onto the tracks. We have secured it in place but will have to wait until the weekend to avoid any major service disruptions. The important thing is no-one was hurt and there was only minor damage to the train and tracks."