The main railway track in the Westcountry is hanging by a thread after the sea wall in South Devon holding up the line was washed away.
Powerful waves have thrashed the exposed coastline rail track at Dawlish which carries the main line between Penzance and Exeter.
A 30 metre section of the wall supporting the track collapsed amid the pounding leaving the line suspended in mid air.
The closure of the line means Cornwall is effectively cut in terms of rail travel.
MPs from across Devon and Cornwall met Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin and senior executives from Network Rail this evening.
South West Devon Conservative MP Gary Streeter said the meeting had been “positive” and that the Minister “has got the message about the urgency of the situation”.
Mr Streeter said Network Rail had pledged to “bring in some heavy muscle” and was moving in machinery which had been working on the Whiteball Tunnel refurbishment, near Taunton.
“We received a firm commitment to look at longer term solutions to address our resilience problem including possible alternative routes,” Mr Streeter said.
“I’m confident the Government has fully got a grip of it, we just need to keep the pressure on to ensure a solution is found.”
Cornwall Council leader John Pollard called for the Government to take immediate action to reinstate the lifeline link.
“We cannot afford any interruption to this vital rail link and the Government needs to act to ensure that repairs are carried out immediately," he said.
"Our road and air links continue to work well and Cornwall remains open for business, however the rail link is crucial to our economy and we need Government support now.
"We are similarly concerned that the vital link to the Isles of Scilly is maintained by sea and air.“
The terrible weather churned up the line and even in more sheltered parts of the line, heavy wooden sleepers were torn up by the winds.
Network Rail, which maintains the country’s rail infrastructure, said engineers would be assessing the damage - as soon as they could get close enough.
However with high tides occurring across the region this morning, coupled with strong, gusting winds it will be some hours before a full assessment is likely to be made.
In the meantime the organisation has posted photographs on Twitter demonstrating the precarious state of affairs.
Branch lines have also not escaped and First Great Western said this morning that St Ives, Falmouth, Gunnislake and Looe branch lines had their services temporarily suspended.
A reduced service is now running between Falmouth Docks and Truro and there are delays on the Gunnislake line.
The firm said no road transport can be provided as an alternative at present.
Network Rail has reported that the line at Looe has now been covered with water as high tide washed into the estuary.
First Great Western has warned that disruption on the line west of Exeter is expected until at least February 7.
South West Trains has warned it will be operating at reduced speeds on those parts of the network still operating.
Mr Pollard said the council was joining with other councils and business organisations to stress the importance of the rail link to the local economy and emphasise the pummelling Cornwall has suffered a series of storms during this winter.
“As a result of the recent storms some communities across Cornwall have suffered significant structural damage which will cost millions of pounds to repair," he said.
"Council staff are doing a superb job offering practical support and protecting people and the infrastructure but the growing list of damage means that we need the assurance that the Government will help.
"Cornwall Council and its partners are doing everything possible and the co-ordinated approach across the region in a example of what can be achieved.
"However, now we need money and action from national bodies to ensure that peoples lives can return to normal as soon as possible."