Eurostar cancels services after death on line

Passengers sit and wait at the Eurostar train terminal at St Pancras International station in London on Monday, after a fatality on the line in Kent. -- PHOTO: AFP
Passengers sit and wait at the Eurostar train terminal at St Pancras International station in London on Monday, after a fatality on the line in Kent. -- PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (AFP) - Eurostar suffered 17 cancellations on Monday after a person was hit by a train and killed on the English side of the cross-Channel service.

"Due to a person hit by a train between Ashford International and Ebbsfleet International, the High Speed Line is currently closed," Eurostar, which offers passenger rail services between London, Brussels and Paris, said in a statement.

Emergency services were at the scene in southeast England and were set to advise on when the vital transport link could be reopened with potential for further cancellations.

A British Transport Police (BTP) spokeswoman said they were called to the line at 1142 GMT on Monday following a report that a person had been hit by a train.

"Medics from South East Coast Ambulance Service also attended the incident, but the person was pronounced dead at the scene," said the spokesman.

The death is not being treated as suspicious.

Of the cancelled services, seven were from London to Paris, four from Paris to London, three from London to Brussels and three from Brussels to London.

The service has suffered a tough start to 2015, having already cancelled services due to electrical problems and a lorry fire.

Some 400 trains and 1.5 million lorries pass through the tunnel every day.