The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has said it is looking into a near miss involving track workers at Penkridge, Staffordshire in July.
RAIB says the workers avoided being hit by a train by less than a second.
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At around 00:06 on Monday 11 July 2022, two track workers were almost struck by a freight train travelling at 61 mph (98 km/h) just south of Penkridge station, Staffordshire. The track workers moved clear of the path of the train less than one second before it reached their position. Another train was passing the track workers on an adjacent line as the freight train approached them.
At the time of the incident, the track workers involved were investigating an ongoing fault with the overhead line equipment which was preventing trains with electric traction from using this section of line, causing significant levels of disruption to train services in the area.
RAIB’s investigation will seek to identify the sequence of events which led to the incident and will include consideration of:
- the actions of those involved
- the arrangements to protect the track workers from moving trains
- the roles, responsibilities and working patterns of relevant staff
- how the competence of staff was managed
- any relevant underlying factors.
Its investigation is independent of any investigation by the railway industry or by the industry’s regulator, the Office of Rail and Road.
It will publish its findings on its website, including any recommendations to improve safety, at the conclusion of its investigation.