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ORR opens investigation after Tube worker crushed against platform

The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has opened an investigation after a London Underground (LU) worker was crushed between a platform and a train early on Saturday morning at Whitechapel station.

The man, a contractor from Harrow in his 30s, was freed by emergency workers and taken to the Royal London Hospital with severe damage to his pelvis.

The regulator said an inspector was present at the scene, and it would now conduct an investigation to assess if there was any breach of health and safety laws and how the accident happened.

The news comes as an investigation by the London Evening Standard found that falls between the platform and train have increased by 63% in the past five years.

George McInulty, LU’s programme director of renewals, said: “Our thoughts are with the contractor and his family following the incident at Whitechapel.

“We have notified the Office of Rail and Road and we will work with them and our contractor to investigate.”

The London Evening Standard reported that the incident could have been caused by brake failure on the train. The man was carrying out track replacement on the District line.

A London Ambulance Service spokeswoman said: “We were called at 4.13am on Saturday to reports of an incident at Whitechapel Underground station. We sent two ambulance crews and a team from the Air Ambulance. We treated a man at the scene for a pelvic injury.”

The RMT is calling for an investigation into a separate incident, on 26 May, where a passenger fell between the train and platform, warning that safety problems are linked to staffing cuts.

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch issued urgent safety advice to London Underground after a derailment in March, although no one was injured in that incident.

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