Emergency service workers who rushed to the scene of the Stonehaven train crash should be commended for their efforts, leading politicians have said.
A total of 18 fire appliances, including specialist vehicles, and two air ambulances were among the crews rushed to the scene after the crash at around 9.40am.
Among those who attended were “hero” police constables Liam Mercer and Eilidh McCabe, who – undeterred by the burning carriages in front of them – rushed ahead and began evacuating people from the wreckage.
Due to the rural location of the crash and the weather conditions – with around 1.4 inches of rain falling in just 24 hours – crews were pushed to their limits as they worked at the scene.
Two firefighters were taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary with ankle and shoulder injuries after they were hit by an uncontrolled vehicle.
Additionally, two others were struck and were treated at the scene.
North East MSP Liam Kerr has called for PCs Mercer and McCabe to be given awards for their bravery.
It came after UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps indicated he would be writing to Scotland’s chief constable, calling for commendations.
Mr Kerr said: “In harrowing and tragic circumstances, the railway family and all our emergency services were challenged in the extreme that day and beyond and their commitment and courage has been rightly noted.
“PC Mercer and PC McCabe’s rapid response highlighted extreme bravery, putting themselves at risk for the protection of others along with their colleagues.
“Both deserve commendations for their swift actions in being the first at the scene during such a traumatic and tragic incident.
“This incident was another illustration of the value all our emergency services have across our communities and my thanks go to all sectors.”
Scotland’s Transport Secretary Michael Matheson also praised the efforts of all the emergency services on August 12 in dealing with a “complex and tragic” event.