COAL will have to be transported by road, and Countrylink passengers by bus, around a spectacular coal train derailment near Boggabri.
No one was injured yesterday afternoon when six wagons of a fully-laden coal train left the tracks on the Coxs Creek Bridge crossing, damaging the bridge and spilling coal across the dry culvert.
Emergency services were called to the bridge 800 metres from Boggabri at approximately 2.30pm.
The 76-wagon train was travelling across the bridge when five or six carriages derailed from the tracks.
The incident started a small grass fire which was quickly extinguished.
The driver of the train was unhurt and the engine remained on the tracks.
Firefighters from NSW Rural Fire Service attended, along with police from the Barwon Local Area Command.
The rail line is expected to remain closed for some time.
An Australian Rail Track Corporation spokesman said officials arrived on the scene late yesterday to assess the damage to the tracks and bridge, recovery requirements for the derailed wagons and to investigate the cause of the derailment.
The spokesman said the line would be closed until further notice and there was no forecast for a return to services at this stage.
A clean-up operation is expected to begin today.
Countrylink Xplorer passenger train services to and from Narrabri and Moree have been replaced by a coach service which will connect with the train at Werris Creek.
Coal from the area which is sent to Newcastle will have to be transported by road for part of the journey.