Railway safety and crime

Investigation launched after track worker forced to dodge train with two seconds to spare

Investigation launched after track worker forced to dodge train with two seconds to spare

10.01.19: An investigation has been launched after a track worker removing cables from a rail line was forced to dodge a train less than two seconds before the vehicle passed him at 51mph. According to the RAIB, the employee was removing cables which...

RAIB calls for safety review of Sheffield junction after double tram collision

RAIB calls for safety review of Sheffield junction after double tram collision

09.01.19: The RAIB has called for a safety review after two tram crashes took place at the same Sheffield junction in just six weeks. Investigators have written to Sheffield City Council advising that a “risk-based review” of the junction...

Track workers in near-miss with 101mph East Midlands train

Track workers in near-miss with 101mph East Midlands train

04.01.19: Two track workers were nearly hit by a train travelling over 100mph in Bedfordshire, an investigation has revealed. The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) said two workers “had to jump out of the way” of the approaching E...

Cairngorm funicular report into UK’s highest railway delayed again

Cairngorm funicular report into UK’s highest railway delayed again

20.12.18: The publication of a report into the safety of the UK’s highest railway and its structural issues has been further delayed until 2019. The Cairngorms funicular railway, which carries tourists, skiers, and snowboarders at the CairnGorm...

Workers who narrowly avoided death had no one in charge and ‘ineffective’ safety arrangements

Workers who narrowly avoided death had no one in charge and ‘ineffective’ safety arrangements

18.12.18: “Ineffective” safety arrangements and a number of unofficial working practices contributed to a group of track workers narrowly avoiding being hit by a train, an RAIB investigation has found. A train service travelling towards L...

London Underground and Balfour Beatty prosecuted after worker suffered ‘life-changing’ injuries

London Underground and Balfour Beatty prosecuted after worker suffered ‘life-changing’ injuries

03.12.18: London Underground and Balfour Beatty have been fined £100,000 and £333,000 respectively – a total of £433,000 – after both pleaded guilty to breaching health and safety laws in a prosecution brought by the ORR. ...

HS2 work on injunction site halted by overnight protesters

HS2 work on injunction site halted by overnight protesters

29.11.18: Four environmental protestors managed to stop work on part of the HS2 rail link at a construction site, which was protected by an injunction ordered by Chris Grayling, chaining themselves to part of the site. The group locked themselves ove...

RAIB to investigate LNER train which broke speed limit by 100mph

RAIB to investigate LNER train which broke speed limit by 100mph

28.11.18: A LNER train travelling at 120mph on a section of track with an emergency speed restriction of 20mph is being investigated by the RAIB. The Aberdeen to London King’s Cross service went through the Sandy South Junction in Bedfordshire...

Passenger safety: Respect the edge

Passenger safety: Respect the edge

27.11.18: Claire Coward, communications lead at the RSSB, discusses her organisation’s latest passenger safety campaign. Incidents at the platform train interface (PTI) account for almost half of the total passenger fatality risk on the mainlin...

RAIB, ORR and BTP all launch investigations after rail worker is killed by train

RAIB, ORR and BTP all launch investigations after rail worker is killed by train

22.11.18: The ORR, RAIB and the BTP have all launched investigations after a railway worker died when he was struck by a train at Stoats Nest Junction, Surrey, in the early hours of 6 November. The RAIB said it is trying to discover why the worker wa...

Clapham Junction disaster lessons are ‘fading’ from rail sector following London Waterloo collision last year

Clapham Junction disaster lessons are ‘fading’ from rail sector following London Waterloo collision last year

19.11.18: Errors made during the derailment of a London Waterloo train last year showed lessons learned from the 1988 Clapham Junction disaster were “fading” from the rail industry, the rail accident investigator has found. The collision...

More people stepping in to stop suicides on the railway

More people stepping in to stop suicides on the railway

07.11.18: More members of the public are stepping in to prevent suicides on Britain’s railways, according to figures published by Network Rail. There was a total of 163 cases of people acting to prevent a suicide on the railway between January...

RSSB appoints two new directors in bid to become more customer and business focused

RSSB appoints two new directors in bid to become more customer and business focused

06.11.18: Two new directors have joined the Rail Safety and Standards Board as the company says it wants to become more customer and business focused. Caroline Fawcett, who has over 25 years in marketing and customer experience roles, joins the board...

Emergency track work in Bristol cancelled due to chemical emergency risk

Emergency track work in Bristol cancelled due to chemical emergency risk

29.10.18: Emergency track work, part of rail upgrades across Bristol, has been abruptly cancelled after a local resident told Network Rail that it’s plans put hundreds of people at risk in the case of a chemical emergency. Network Rail were pla...

Train’s near miss with track workers caused by mix-up over location

Train’s near miss with track workers caused by mix-up over location

23.10.18: Two track workers working on a bridge near Dundee were almost hit by a train because the wrong section of the track was blocked off, an investigation by the RAIB has found. Their report said that the workers were on the bridge when the 22:4...

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Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

22/02/2019Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

The potential of a Leicester to Coventry rail link has been revived again as one of the key highlights of a new transport masterplan outlined by ... more >
Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

22/02/2019Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

Eurostar queues of up to 15,000 passengers could mount up at London’s St Pancras International station in the event of a no-deal Brexit, ac... more >
New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

21/02/2019New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

A new head of safety and environment has been announced by Hull Trains, with Mark Shepherd due to replace Phil Green in the role. Bringing m... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

05/02/2019Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

Keith Williams’ ongoing Rail Review presents a golden opportunity to rebuild the industry’s weakened relationship with its users and set it on a better track for the future, argues David Sidebottom, passenger director at Transport Focus. Passengers waiting at stations today are not peering down the line looking for a strategy ... more >
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TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

05/02/2019TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

Mike Harding, from Lancaster University’s Data Science Institute, introduces us to TrackWater: an innovative project between Lancaster Univ... more >
High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

05/02/2019High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

Last year, the Scottish Government announced two feasibility studies to better understand the economic and environmental implications of options ... more >
Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

05/02/2019Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

Steve Quinby, Network Rail’s head of data collection, gives us the rundown on the state-of-the-art ‘Flying Banana’ train. ... more >
Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

05/02/2019Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

Jacqueline Starr, managing director of customer experience at the Rail Delivery Group, explains how a new app developed for the rail industry wil... more >

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TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

22/01/2019TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

Peter Molyneux, Transport for the North’s (TfN’s) strategic roads director, has been leading on the development of the seven economic... more >