Expert Personal Injury Lawyers Irwin Mitchell Represent Those Injured In The November 9 Derailment
Expert lawyers acting for Croydon tram crash survivors have welcomed the latest accident report from investigators examining the cause of the fatal derailment.
Investigators probing the November 9 crash have revealed that the absence of emergency braking suggests the tram driver "lost awareness" before the accident.
The tram - which was travelling from New Addington to Wimbledon slid for 25 metres on its side before coming to a halt, killing seven and injuring 51.
Survivors of the crash instructed expert personal injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help them get answers as to what happened that day as well as access specialist rehabilitation for their injuries.
Mike Dodd, personal injury specialist at Irwin Mitchell, said: “The impact of the crash has been devastating for our clients, most of whom are still coming to terms with the psychological impact of the collision, as well as their physical injuries.
Public transport on the whole, we know, is an incredibly safe way to travel, but this tragically was not the case in this instance.
We welcome this week’s update from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch’s thorough investigation and of course lessons must be learned to ensure an accident like this cannot happen again.
The investigation will need to be clear and concise to restore the public’s confidence in using such transport. And so that the survivors and family members of those who lost their lives receive the answers they deserve.”
Additional speed restrictions and signage have been introduced following the accident.
A report by the RAIB, release yesterday, says: "The late application of the brakes, and the absence of emergency braking, suggests that the driver had lost awareness that he was approaching the tight, left-hand curve".
On board data shows that the driver began applying the brakes just two-and-a-half seconds before he reached the speed limit sign at Sandilands Junction, decreasing the speed of the tram by only three miles per hour by the time it passed the sign.
Investigators said that the sign on the sharp bend was positioned 90-120m after the point at which drivers would need to start braking to reduce speed.
There was no sign to tell drivers when to apply the brake, but the report said that drivers “were expected to know this from their knowledge of the route."
Heavy rain on the morning of the crash is also likely to have reduced the "readability" of the sign.
The interim report also said the tram was travelling faster than initially thought, entering a sharp bend at 46mph (73km/h) – nearly four times the speed limit of 13mph (20km/h).
The RAIB is also investigating another case of speeding in the same area 10 days before the crash.
Investigators will also determine whether lives could have been saved if the tram had been fitted with shatterproof safety glass – a requirement on all passenger trains.
This comes after only one of the seven passengers killed was found inside the tram.
The tram's driver was arrested at the scene and questioned on suspicion of manslaughter. He has been bailed until May.
The RAIB is expected to issue a full accident report later this year.
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