Grayrigg rail crash update
Head of personal injury at law firm Irwin Mitchell Andrew Tucker represents clients who were injured in the Grayrigg rail crash in 2007. He said: "In recent years we have represented a number of victims of rail crashes and are deeply concerned that, despite the frequency and severity of these incidents, it has been decided not to carry out a full public inquiry into the Grayrigg and Potters Bar derailments.
"At the time of these incidents safety checks on the rails were carried out on foot and safety officer were charged with walking up and down to look for faults. On February 18 2007 such a safety check was scheduled around the Grayrigg area but did not take place and on February 23rd a Virgin train was derailed killing one passenger and injuring a further 86.
"The similarities between the 2002 Potters Bar and the 2007 Grayrigg disasters where deteriorating points were found to be the cause must prompt us to question whether or not sufficiently robust safety procedures are in place to protect passengers.
"Although an inquest will determine the causes of death for the families of those who tragically lost their lives it will not serve, as an inquiry would, to determine what the fundamental failings of the railway system are. As the number of people using the railways increases it is vital that the public have confidence in the network going forward as pressure on the infrastructure increases.
"We feel that only a public inquiry considering these and other cases such as the 2000 Hatfield disaster, in which four passengers were killed, would serve to highlight the wider failings of the rail industry, answer the questions of grieving family members and ensure that the same mistakes are avoided going forward."