Police are investigating how a runaway car ended up on rail tracks before being hit by a train and shoved along the line in Bingley.

The red Vauxhall Corsa was parked on a residential street before it rolled down the road and smashed through a wooden fence on to the track.

It was hit by the Leeds to Skipton train on Monday at 8.45pm and shunted along the track for about 125 metres before stopping near the bridge on Leonard Street.

No-one was in the car, which belonged to somebody visiting a friend in Healey Avenue.

Today, the friend did not want to comment, but did say the driver had parked the car on the street before and the accident was possibly caused by a mechanical failure.

Northern Rail staff moved the badly crumpled vehicle from the side of the track today lunchtime, where firefighters had moved it on Monday evening using a winch.

Engineering student Jordan Darley, who lives near the Five Rise Locks, read about the crash on Twitter on Monday night and went to see what had happened.

The 20-year-old said: “It [the car] was literally stuck to the front of the train. They had to cut it and use a winch to prise it off. I was glad nobody was in it.”

He said at least 50 people had watched the three fire crews and police and British Transport Police work to move the car and a second train pull up for passengers to transfer to.

“It’s not something you see every day,” he said. “The emergency response was incredible.”

Bingley fire Station watch Commander Andy Gray said: “It was unusual. Initially we couldn’t understand how a car could have got down to the line.”

The Bingley fire crew, which was joined by fire engines from Keighley and Fairweather Green, was at the incident for up to three hours. The line was closed until 11.35pm.