12 year old boy could have died at Queens Park Sidings. The Time has come to bring back detrainment staff on the Bakerloo.
Yesterday (October 8th 2012) at 3.30pm, only the quick intervention of a driver in the North Sheds at Queens Park prevented a 12 year old boy from getting hit by a moving train or killed on live 630 volt juice rails.
The boy was over–carried into the sidings at Queens Park and managed to shimmy up and over the ‘inner car barriers’ and out of the train. He could have killed himself as his means of exit from the train was directly going onto the live positive rail. He got out of the train into an area of 4 live running roads; it was only the actions of the driver that prevented a fatality.
He told the driver “he was going to walk home to Kensal green on the “charcoals”, ie the ballast.
No driver wants or deserves the death of a 12 year old boy on their conscience!
This incident comes just one month after a passenger had left a bag on a detraining train at Queen’s Park, and unable to find anyone to offer assistance, tried to run into the north sheds to retrieve the bag. This passenger could have been hit by one of the several moving trains on multiple roads in this area or fried on the rails if it had not been for the quick intervention of another Bakerloo diver.
At the time, RMT safety reps warned management that the failing detrainment process on the line was an accident waiting to happen. LU failed to heed RMT’s warnings.
If we add to these incidents the horrendous number of over-carries into the sheds and the threat that our drivers face from these then it obvious to all, except those who gain financially, that the current detrainment process is broken. In management speak, it is not fit for purpose.
Management are stating they will call an investigation into yesterday’s incident but this does not go far enough for the RMT and its safety reps. We want an emergency meeting at the highest level to review the whole detrainment process and return to a safe way of working.
Drivers on the line recall the problems that we had with ‘blocking back’ when using the detrainment staff on the line. But detrainment staff were never intended to be the fastest option. Management got rid of them because they were not the cheapest option. We need them brought back ASAP because they are the safest option.
It is only a matter of time before we have a fatality or a serious assault as a result of the current process. This cannot go on.
The RMT is calling for an emergency meeting at the highest level to discuss the issues involved.