Train passengers had their journey’s delayed for over an hour while rail staffed helped free a red-faced signalman – who got trapped in an outside toilet.
The hapless worker made a dash from his post to the nearby Victorian outhouse to relieve himself but found himself stranded when the lock became stuck.
According to the official incident LOG one train driver had to get out and walk to the signal box when he was unable to make radio contact with the signalman near Worcester Foregate Street station.
He eventually found his colleague when he heard his cries for help coming from the brick toilet at the manned signal box at Henwick, St Johns, Worcester.
But he had to call in a local operations manager when he couldn’t free him from the loo.
The embarrassed signalman was eventually freed after his colleagues managed to force the door open using a crowbar.
The popular 15.13 Hereford to London service was held up for over an hour while the rescue operation was launched last Wednesday.
Rail bosses publicly announced the reason for the delays as “signalling problems”.
But the truth was revealed on a rail enthusiasts’ internet forum after one cheeky user posted the incident log online.
It reads: “Western Route Incident, Signaller issue at Henwick, update 16:35.
“All trains stopped at Henwick (Worcester Foregate Street) due to loss of contact with the Signaller at Henwick LC.
“Driver of 1P65 is walking to the signal box to investigate.
“Update: Local Operations Manager is on site and the signaller is stuck in the toilet…”
A number of website users took the opportunity to make hilarious cracks at the signalman’s expense.
One user, called tsr said: “Where are the relief staff when you need ’em…?”
Harbon1 added: “Too busy filling in the signalman’s log.”
ANorthernGuard wrote: “Wow what a shi**er for the poor guy that’s unless u r taking the p**s of course.”
A National Rail spokesman apologised for the incident and blamed the rail network’s ageing buildings.
He said: “Much of the railway is still controlled from Victorian signal boxes, which often have outside loos.
“Our plans to modernise the railway will see control moved to state-of-the-art regional control centres, where unfortunate incidents such as this simply wouldn’t be an issue.
“We apologise to anyone whose journey was delayed or disrupted.”