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Monday, 6 December 1999
Page: 12803

Mr BARTLETT —At around 8.30 last Thursday morning a crowded Blue Mountains commuter train slammed into the back of the Indian Pacific just east of Glenbrook station. Tragically, seven people were killed—five from the mountains, one from Lithgow and one from the city. Over 50 others were injured, though thankfully it seems none critically. I would like at this time to express my deep sympathy to the families and friends of those killed in this horrific accident. I want to assure these people that they are not alone. As they attempt to deal with their grief, our thoughts and prayers are with them. For them, this Christmas will be a particularly sad and painful one, but they do have the support of the local community.

I would also like to express my thanks to all those who helped at the scene of the accident and its terrible aftermath. The SES, police, bushfire brigade, ambulance officers and paramedics were magnificent. Their professionalism ensured speedy and effective attention to the injured. Others, including nearby residents, the Salvation Army, the Red Cross, ministers of local churches and the staff and management of the Glenbrook Bowling Club provided tremendous support to traumatised passengers. They played an essential part in easing the impact of this tragedy. It was another example of our Blue Mountains community pulling together in a crisis, and we gratefully acknowledge their valuable support.

Mr SPEAKER —Just before calling the next member, I believe I would speak on behalf of all members of the chamber if I were to identify the chamber with the sentiments expressed by the member for Macquarie.