December 17, 2019

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Rail safety

Near miss between a passenger train and lorry at level crossing

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has published its report into a near miss between a passenger train and lorry, which occurred at Mucking AHB level crossing in Essex on 13 March 2019.

Level crossingThe passenger train passed over Mucking automatic half barrier level crossing a few seconds after a partially loaded concrete delivery lorry had reversed clear as part of a manoeuvre to enter an adjacent Network Rail construction site. The lorry driver was following hand signals from a railway worker and drove onto the crossing after it had been automatically activated by the approaching train and red stop lights had begun flashing. A lowering crossing barrier came down on the lorry and was manually lifted by site staff, before the lorry reversed off the crossing.

The RAIB say that the incident happened because staff involved in the work planning, and staff on site, did not recognise and manage risk associated with working near level crossings. Following the incident, Network Rail highlighted this risk in a briefing note issued to organisations and staff working on its infrastructure. The Amey Inabensa joint venture working at the construction site modified procedures and briefed staff on the risk.

 Recommendations

The RAIB did not make any recommendations because Network Rail and the Amey Inabensa joint venture had already addressed the factors that would have resulted in recommendations. The RAIB has identified four learning points covering compliance with the Highway Code, the control of construction vehicles near level crossings, taking account of nearby level crossings when planning construction work and effective management of small construction sites.

Read the report in full here.

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