Australia:Train travels 92 kms without driver, derailed

The train, made up of four locomotives, was eventually derailed at a set of points at Turner's Siding, about 120km south of Port Hedland. (Video grab/NDTV)

A fully-laden freight train, owned by mining giant BHP, was deliberately derailed after hurtling through Western Australia for 92km at high speed without its driver, the company said.

The 268-wagon train, carrying iron ore, travelled for 50 minutes with no-one on board in the outback Pilbara region on Monday.

The train, made up of four locomotives, was eventually derailed at a set of points at Turner's Siding, about 120km south of Port Hedland.

Mobile phone footage obtained by the ABC News shows the twisted and mangled wreckage of the train lying strewn alongside the track.

The derailment was orchestrated from BHP's Integrated Remote Operations Centre in Perth, about 1,500km away.

Two rail safety officers from the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator have arrived at the site of the derailment to begin an investigation.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is separately investigating the derailment.

A spokesperson for the ATSB said the investigation was likely to be completed in the second quarter of 2019.

BHP Billiton confirmed that it had suspended all of its iron ore rail operations and that no one was injured during the incident.

In a statement, BHP said about 1.5 kilometres of track was damaged, and the recovery process would take about one week.

"We are working with the appropriate authorities to investigate the situation," the company said.

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