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Norwich man hurt as train window shatters

PUBLISHED: 06:05 16 March 2010 | UPDATED: 08:51 02 July 2010

Charlie Catchpole, 63, was

Charlie Catchpole, 63, was "covered top to toe" in sharp shards of glass when the window of the train smashed

Mary Hamilton

A former Norwich man escaped unharmed when a window of his train carriage shattered, showering him with broken glass.

A former Norwich man escaped serious injury when a window of his train carriage shattered, showering him with broken glass.

Charlie Catchpole, 63, was "covered top to toe" in sharp shards of glass when the window smashed - but escaped with only a small cut on his forehead.

The former journalist said he was lucky he had been looking down at the time of the incident, otherwise he feared he could have been blinded.

"I found it really worrying. If someone had been sitting in that seat they would have been a goner - they certainly could have been blinded.

"It was just luck that it happened when the train wasn't crowded. I dread to think what could have happened if the train was full.

"I'm a bit shaken by it but I'm not going to let it stop me coming to watch Norwich City play. I'm tougher than that."

Mr Catchpole, who lives in Teddington, London, was returning home from visiting his mother in Saxlingham Nethergate on the 4pm Norwich to Colchester service on Sunday evening.

The train was between Diss and Stowmarket when Mr Catchpole heard a loud crash and the window shattered inwards.

"I was lucky I was looking down and I was wearing my glasses," he said. "I stayed looking down - I thought it was the safest thing to do - and I put my hands up over my head to protect myself.

"Luckily the carriage was only half full, but most of the people there were scattered with glass. I kept seeing people shaking their heads to try and get the glass out of their hair.

"I was incredibly lucky to get away with just a tiny scratch."

After the window was smashed the train continued to Ipswich, where it was taken out of service and British Transport Police began their investigation.

A spokesman for British Transport Police said the incident was reported at about 5.20pm, and that the window was smashed by an unknown object.

She said: "BTP take these types of incidents very seriously and we are appealing for anyone with any information about the incident to come forward. Throwing stones is a form of criminal damage and we will arrest anyone found doing so.

"Not only can throwing stones and other missiles cause delays and cancellations to services, there is also the potential for a serious accident or injury to be caused to passengers and staff as a result of these offences. If anyone has any information that can assist our investigation then we'd like to hear from them."

ÜIf you have any information about the incident, you can contact British Transport Police on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting number 291 of 14/03/2010, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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