Transport Secretary Michael Matheson has confirmed that investigations at the scene of the Stonehaven train derailment will come to an end this wek.
Driver Brett McCullough, 45, conductor Donald Dinnie, 58, and passenger Christopher Stuchbury, 62, died in the incident which left the nation shocked on August 12.
Mr Matheson recently told BBC Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland radio programme that the work at the scene should conclude this week – which will mean efforts to remove the stricken carriages can begin.
He said: “As it stands at the moment, the Rail Accident Investigation Branch are very advanced in their investigation.
“They are making good progress, but it is likely that the line there will remain closed for several weeks yet, given the remedial work that will have to be undertaken by Network Rail once the recovery operation is complete.
“It’s a very difficult site which the engineers are operating in and a significant amount of work had to be put in place in order to access the site.”
Two independent task forces have been launched in the wake of a train crash in which three men died.
Dame Julia Slingo, former chief scientist at the Met Office and an expert in climatology, will lead the weather action task force.
Meanwhile Lord Robert Mair, a geotechnical engineer and member of the House of Lords select committee on science and technology, will spearhead the earthworks management task force.