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Author Topic: Simon Brown, rail enthusiast, died on Gatwick Express train, 7 Aug 2016  (Read 20780 times)
PhilWakely
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« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2016, 08:59:23 am »

One Saturday recently, I was walking along the seawall between Dawlish and Dawlish Warren when I was passed by the "Daytime Sleeper" aka "VegEx Spotters' Special" on its Up working to Exeter. I was shocked by the number of heads leaning far out of the door windows with video cameras or camera phones - some facing backwards, so unaware of what would be passing on the other line.
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TonyK
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« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2016, 10:14:18 pm »

I recall the same on the West Somerset Railway some years back. Whether it was an organised thing, I couldn't say, but every vestibule window seemed to have someone hanging out of it, some wearing safety goggles. Now, that's a slow, quiet, mainly single track line, but it still struck me as foolish, as well as a little anti-social. It could be that doing such things on a heritage line lulls one into a false sense of security elsewhere. I can't recall a similar incident, but how many near misses could there have been that didn't make the papers?
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chrisr_75
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« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2016, 12:02:13 am »

I recall an incident very similar to this one many years ago involving someone's head and the town walls of Conwy where the railway passes through (either in the class 37 or 33 era of the Holyhead to Crewe/Cardiff services) - needless to say the wall won, but someone added the word 'ouch' to the wall shortly after in red paint, I can only assume it was a track worker with a slightly dark sense of humour...

In the dying days of class 37 haulage in north wales, prior to the 175's entering service, they were a right pain in the ass hanging out of any available window (both doors and compartment windows), blocking up the vestibules and generally making a bit of a nuisance of themselves. I've seen a lot of negative comments about this sort of behaviour on rail tours (which these days seem to generally be of the more civilised silver service meal + steam loco type rather than the 'class xx's on an unusual route' sort of thing) with quite some competitive carry on to bag the 'best' windows.
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2016, 08:19:01 am »


In the dying days of class 37 haulage in north wales, prior to the 175's entering service, they were a right pain in the ass hanging out of any available window (both doors and compartment windows), blocking up the vestibules and generally making a bit of a nuisance of themselves. I've seen a lot of negative comments about this sort of behaviour on rail tours (which these days seem to generally be of the more civilised silver service meal + steam loco type rather than the 'class xx's on an unusual route' sort of thing) with quite some competitive carry on to bag the 'best' windows.

...........the "best" windows? What were they expecting? A better view of the Hanging gardens of Babylon? Wildebeest sweeping majestically across the plain?  Roll Eyes
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TonyK
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« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2016, 10:44:34 am »

...........the "best" windows? What were they expecting? A better view of the Hanging gardens of Babylon? Wildebeest sweeping majestically across the plain?  Roll Eyes

Sydney Opera House?

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...but someone added the word 'ouch' to the wall shortly after in red paint...

At the point where the car of an inebriated George Michael damaged the wall of a shop, some wag wrote "Wham!"
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rower40
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« Reply #20 on: August 12, 2016, 01:51:50 pm »

At least twice when on an HST on the Newquay branch, I've heard the Train Manager advise passengers of the limited clearances and lineside vegetation to be found beyond the window, and that anyone opening the drop-lights for purposes other than ventilation will be dealt with severely.
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chrisr_75
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« Reply #21 on: August 12, 2016, 02:55:32 pm »


In the dying days of class 37 haulage in north wales, prior to the 175's entering service, they were a right pain in the ass hanging out of any available window (both doors and compartment windows), blocking up the vestibules and generally making a bit of a nuisance of themselves. I've seen a lot of negative comments about this sort of behaviour on rail tours (which these days seem to generally be of the more civilised silver service meal + steam loco type rather than the 'class xx's on an unusual route' sort of thing) with quite some competitive carry on to bag the 'best' windows.

...........the "best" windows? What were they expecting? A better view of the Hanging gardens of Babylon? Wildebeest sweeping majestically across the plain?  Roll Eyes

I think certain veteran diesel locomotives are the 'basher' equivalent of the wildebeest of Torquay, the best windows offer the most favourable experience of 'thrash' and 'clag', oft resulting in gleeful cries of 'hellfire' and 'my lords'...   Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #22 on: August 12, 2016, 04:08:29 pm »


In the dying days of class 37 haulage in north wales, prior to the 175's entering service, they were a right pain in the ass hanging out of any available window (both doors and compartment windows), blocking up the vestibules and generally making a bit of a nuisance of themselves. I've seen a lot of negative comments about this sort of behaviour on rail tours (which these days seem to generally be of the more civilised silver service meal + steam loco type rather than the 'class xx's on an unusual route' sort of thing) with quite some competitive carry on to bag the 'best' windows.

...........the "best" windows? What were they expecting? A better view of the Hanging gardens of Babylon? Wildebeest sweeping majestically across the plain?  Roll Eyes

I think certain veteran diesel locomotives are the 'basher' equivalent of the wildebeest of Torquay, the best windows offer the most favourable experience of 'thrash' and 'clag', oft resulting in gleeful cries of 'hellfire' and 'my lords'...   Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes

Ah I see............I thought such people only existed in caricature!  Cheesy
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Chris from Nailsea
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« Reply #23 on: August 31, 2016, 12:15:36 pm »

From the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB):

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Investigation into a fatal accident to a passenger near Balham, South London, 7 August 2016.


The site of the accident, showing the direction of travel of the train (image courtesy of Network Rail Infrastructure Limited)

At around 17:25 on Sunday 7 August 2016, a passenger travelling on a train from Gatwick Airport to London Victoria struck his head on a signal gantry near Balham. The train was travelling at about 60 mph (96 km/h) and he sustained fatal injuries.

The train was the 17:05 Gatwick Express service, formed of a five-coach class 442 electric multiple unit. Witness evidence indicates that the passenger was standing at a door in the third coach on the side facing away from the other railway tracks. This door, which is intended for the use of the train’s guard and opens inwards, has an opening droplight. There is a notice above the window “Do not lean out of window when train is moving”.

The signal gantry involved in the accident is about 700 metres south of Balham station, and spans all four lines. After the accident, RAIB measured the distance between the train, standing on the up fast line, and the post of the signal gantry. We found that, at the height of the middle of the droplight, this distance was around 260 mm (10.25 inches).

Our investigation will include examination of:
- The factors which affected the clearance between the train and the signal gantry
- The measures in place to control the risks from leaning out of train windows

Our investigation is independent of any investigation by the railway industry, the British Transport Police or by the industry’s regulator, the Office of Rail and Road.

We will publish our findings, including any recommendations to improve safety, at the conclusion of our investigation. This report will be available on our website.

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William Huskisson MP was the first person to be killed by a train while crossing the tracks, in 1830.  Many more have died in the same way since then.  Don't take a chance: stop, look, listen.

"Level crossings are safe, unless they are used in an unsafe manner."  Discuss.
TaplowGreen
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« Reply #24 on: August 31, 2016, 02:04:40 pm »

.........another one to add to an already lengthy list.......

http://darwinawards.com/darwin/
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #25 on: August 31, 2016, 05:41:56 pm »

Hang on a minute though......that signal gantry leg is seriously foul of the structure gauge.  I do not condone people hanging their heads out of train windows but that is why the standard structure gauge is what it is.
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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #26 on: August 31, 2016, 05:56:35 pm »

Hang on a minute though......that signal gantry leg is seriously foul of the structure gauge.  I do not condone people hanging their heads out of train windows but that is why the standard structure gauge is what it is.

I'm maybe misunderstanding but it seems to comply with the 1983 regs previously quoted, but not the "new infrastructure" gauge?
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grahame
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« Reply #27 on: August 31, 2016, 06:19:44 pm »

From the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB):
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After the accident, RAIB measured the distance between the train, standing on the up fast line, and the post of the signal gantry. We found that, at the height of the middle of the droplight, this distance was around 260 mm (10.25 inches).

That's a lot less than I would guessed for an obstacle clearance.
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Oxonhutch
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« Reply #28 on: August 31, 2016, 07:13:21 pm »

I can see the unions getting involved in this. It could have been one of their members - after all the droplight is for the guard's use.  A blow to the head doesn't need to be 60 mph to kill you. I reckon 10 mph could be sufficient in the wrong circumstances - just checking up on some late running or other foreseeable circumstances.

On the London Underground the clearence is probably five inches but there no-one can poke their head out.  I sense a serious industry failing.
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #29 on: August 31, 2016, 07:43:16 pm »

The structure gauge at the time of installation of the signal structure (mid-1980s) can be found here:
http://85a.co.uk/forum/gallery/2/original/2_040252_350000001.gif
« Last Edit: August 31, 2016, 07:50:24 pm by SandTEngineer » Logged
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