Tube passenger died after falling through gap

A Underground sign seen through the gates to an entrance at Paddington Underground station, London, as a strike by Underground workers closed the capital’s entire Tube system. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday August 5, 2015. Members of four unions are taking industrial action for the second time in a month because of a deadlocked dispute over plans to launch a new all-night service next month. See PA story INDUSTRY Tube. Photo credit should read: Anthony Devlin/PA WireA closed sign at Waterloo Underground station, London, as a strike by Underground workers closed the capital’s entire Tube system. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday August 5, 2015. Members of four unions are taking industrial action for the second time in a month because of a deadlocked dispute over plans to launch a new all-night service next month. See PA story INDUSTRY Tube. Photo credit should read: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire (PA Archive)
12:29pm, Tue 07 Sep 2021
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A commuter fell through the gap between a train and the platform on the London Underground before being trapped and crushed to death, an investigation has found.

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) said the man had not been spotted by Tube staff and lay on the tracks for more than a minute before being hit by a second train.

The accident happened on May 26 2020, at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, when no other members of the public were present to help.

The RAIB said the man had “stumbled” while getting off the train and fell into a large gap caused by the curve of the track at Waterloo Station at around 10.10am.

He was unable to free himself from and was trapped for more than a minute before being crushed by the departing train.

He then lay “motionless” for a further minute and a half before being hit by a second train entering the station.

The RAIB report said that, due to the man’s position on the tracks, he was “difficult” to detect on despatch monitors and was not seen by train operators.

No other people were present to assist the man or raise the alarm, the report said.

Passenger levels on the Underground on May 26 2020 were 9% of the equivalent day in 2019, according to data from the Department of Transport (DfT).

The investigation concluded that London Underground was not able to identify or provide detailed assessment of all factors, such as curved platforms, that contributed to risks of accidents at certain Tube stations.

The RAIB recommended that ongoing evaluation of existing safety measures be undertaken at stations as well as “periodic” risk assessments for individual locations.

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