A MAN has been jailed for his part in a plan to steal machinery which almost resulted in a train derailment.

Jordan Andrewatha, 21, of Cedar Avenue, Mexborough, was jailed for two years at Sheffield Crown Court after pleading guilty to arranging to receive a stolen wood chipper.

The botched theft attempt, which took place in the early hours of November 7 near Swinton, caused serious damage to an empty passenger train after the wood chipper - which weighed more than a tonne - was driven onto the track and left there.

Ian Trantum, from British Transport Police, said: "This sentence demonstrates the seriousness of what happened that morning. Thankfully, the train was empty, apart from the driver and train manager, who feared the train would be derailed.

"Both were left extremely shaken by the incident. This act endangered lives and caused serious disruption to services.

"The subsequent investigation and removal of the equipment from the line meant delays for passengers and the cancellation of rush hour services."

The investigation into the incident is ongoing.