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Officers have paid tribute to a police dog killed when he was struck by a train as he tracked burglars.

The dog – called Jet – was trying to locate suspects linked to a break-in at a commercial property in Yate, Gloucestershire.

Sadly he went onto a covered stretch of railway line, was hit by a train and later had to be put to sleep.

A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Police said: ”It is with great sadness that we are announcing the death of one of our police dogs, PD Jet, who was injured following an incident whilst on duty yesterday morning.

”Jet, a six-year-old German Shepherd, had been deployed to locate suspected offenders following a report of a burglary at a commercial premises in Yate when he free tracked onto an obscured section of railway line and was struck by a train.

”Sadly, despite receiving emergency treatment over the past 24 hours, his injuries were deemed too severe and the decision was taken to put him to sleep at midday today.

”The burglary suspects remain outstanding and enquiries to locate them are ongoing.

”Since joining us from Devon and Cornwall Constabulary in September last year, Jet has had some outstanding successes within Avon and Somerset, including locating wanted and vulnerable persons.”

Tactical Support Teams Chief Inspector, Jason Shears said: “We are incredibly sad at the loss of PD Jet.

“Jet was a determined and focussed Police Dog who loved working in the many important roles our dogs perform in, all of which help to keep our communities safe.

“Jet and his handler had a very special bond which was cemented by the months of hard work and training carried out.

”Jet will be missed by all within Avon and Somerset Police.”