A WOMAN has made a miraculous escape after her car got struck by a passenger train during a rush hour.

Firefighter crews were called to a level crossing in Frating Abbey Farm Road, Frating at about 7.20am yesterday, after reports that a passenger train had hit a car.

Crews from Colchester, Clacton, Brightlingsea, Frinton and Chelmsford all attended the scene.

There were about 50 passengers on board the train at the time of the incident, but there were no reports of any injuries.

The passengers were travelling on the 07.05 Clacton-on-Sea to London Liverpool Street service, when the train struck the car at crossing, which is located between Great Bentley and Alresford.

A spokesman for the Essex Fire and Rescue Service has said it is believed the car "ended up on the level crossing after skidding on some ice" and "the driver was unable to move her car from the crossing before the next train came through."

He added: "Thankfully the driver escaped from her car before the train arrived, and although the train struck the car, there are no injuries to the vehicle driver, the train driver or any passengers."

A spokesman for Greater Anglia has said the incident is being investigated.

Harwich and Manningtree Standard: Escape - the driver managed to escape her car as the next train was approaching

He added:“We believe icy road conditions caused a car to be shunted on to the tracks and it was clipped by a passing train and came to a stand near a derelict outbuilding.

"Nobody was injured.

“There were around 50 passengers on board, who were transferred onto another train to be taken to Colchester.

“Buses were in operation while British Transport Police and Essex Fire and Rescue service attended the scene.

“Anyone who was affected by the delays can claim delay repay at www.greateranglia.co.uk”

Councillor Gary Scott, responsible for the Alresford and Elmstead ward, has addressed the incident.

He has also called for better safety measures in place to prevent similar situations.

He said: "Whatever side of the road you come, there is only a small half barrier on the left side and there should be a barrier across the whole road.

"If you go down there and you slip on ice then the vehicle could easily go where there is no path.

"There has been accidents there in the past and I would have thought Network Rail have done some changes."