November 07, 2004

Ufton Nervet crash

- 6 now confirmed
Posted by Patrick Crozier at November 7, 2004 04:41 AM

I've commented in a bit more detail over at my blog:

I've never liked AHBs having presided over a similar incident (albeit slower speeds and no casualties) some years ago.

Posted by: Mark Ellott at November 7, 2004 09:27 AM

It seems off to blame the signalling technology rather than the drivers.

There's no reason other than idiocy or deathwishes why AHBs should lead to car/train collisions. And in terms of policy outcomes, the large number of car/train collisions here (along with the larger numbers of car/car, car/motorbike, car/cycle, car/pedestrian collisions elsewhere) says more about the inadequacies of driver licensing than the inadequacies of railway infrastructure.

Posted by: john b at November 8, 2004 01:36 AM

I'm not blaming the technology as such. Unfortunately this type of crossing design leaves the railawy vulnerable to the antics of drivers. My dislike is driven by direct involvement with a similar incident.

All level crossings are potentially dangerous. However, AHBs, miniature light operated and occupation crossings are way out ahead of the rest as they have no failsafe in the event of a vehicle becoming stuck on the crossing.

Posted by: Mark Ellott at November 8, 2004 08:48 AM

The safety record of AHB crossings is fairly good; the number of fatalities is a tiny fraction of the 3000+ annual death toll on the roads.

If the crash was indeed a deliverate suicide, there's not much you can do to prevent it. Don't forget, the last two derailments of passenger trains caused by vehicles on the line didn't even take place at crossings.

Posted by: Tim Hall at November 8, 2004 06:44 PM