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Lawyers call for rehabilitation fund for Croydon tram victims

17th November 2016

The Major Trauma team at lawyers Moore Blatch which is representing victims injured in the Croydon tram crash are calling for the establishment of an urgent rehabilitation fund for those that have suffered life changing injuries.

Trevor Sterling, Partner and Major Trauma lead, said “Although we welcome the recommendations in the RAIB’s report and the offer from Transport for London to pay funeral costs for those fatally injured, we believe that support should extend to those who have suffered serious injuries.

“A rehabilitation fund would support statutory provision, which is often lacking.   For example, those victims requiring neuro rehabilitation could potentially have a long wait on the NHS, and a rehabilitation fund can go some way to addressing this.  A rehab fund was established after the Alton Towers accident, and we are asking for a similar fund to be set up for the victims of the Croydon crash.”

The accident resulted in seven people losing their lives and over 50 people suffering injuries, eight of which were serious and/or life changing.

The RAIB are continuing to investigate the accident, along with the British Transport Police, with a full report to follow in due course.

Main findings of the Rail Accident Investigation Branch released 16 November 2016

  • There is no indication that the tram, its brakes or the track were suffering from any defect that could have contributed to the derailment;

  • The on board CCTV equipment did not appear to be working at the time of the accident.

  • According to the On-Tram Data Recorder (OTDR), the tram was travelling at 50mph (within the speed limit) when approaching the curve before some braking was applied and the speed reduced to 43.5mph.

  • The speed restriction at the point of the derailment was 12.5mph.

  • There is a reflective board, indicating the 12.5mph speed restriction situated 30 metres before the point of derailment.

  • In order to slow the tram down to the required speed of 12.5mph, the tram would need to brake at its full service rate, 210 metres before the point of derailment (180 metres before the reflective board).

The urgent safety recommendations made by the RAIB call for:-

Those companies responsible for managing and operating the tram service to work together to take measures to reduce the risk of trams approaching the junction at excessive speed, including:-

  • Imposing a further speed restriction before the existing 12.5mph zone; and

  • Putting in place additional signage.

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