A rail worker was one second from being flattened by a 60mph as he removed a bin bag from the track.
Station CCTV captured the shocking moment the unnamed Network Rail employee managed to scramble to safety with the train speeding behind him.
An investigation into the chilling close call found the worker, dressed in a high-visibility jacket, was not given permission to pick up the litter.
The scare happened on December 19 last year at Rowlands Castle, Hampshire where CCTV from the incident shows a member of the public watching on from a platform bench.
A few yards in front of the witness is the worker on his hands and knees over the platform’s yellow line, beside a clear plastic bag, The News reports.
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The fast train service on the line between London Waterloo and Portsmouth was not scheduled to stop at the village which it travelled through at 60mph, according to the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB).
Both the mobile operations manager who climbed onto the platform in the nick of time, and the train driver were left “distressed” by the incident, the investigation found.
The RAIB found the staff member failed to ensure there were no oncoming trains when he decided to clear the tracks of a rubbish bag, thrown onto the railway by youths.
He claimed to have no idea the train was set to hurtle through the station until he saw its headlights.
Instead of completing the formal process of ensuring it was safe to step onto the track, the staff member simply told a signaller at Petersfield, (the next station along) to explain what he needed to do.
The investigation found he did not make a specific request for the line to be temporarily shut off from passing trains, nor was he granted explicit permission to access the tracks.
New safety recommendations have since been introduced by the RAIB, so Network Rail’s operations managers are “suitably recruited, trained and managed”.