Bestwood, United Kingdom: Pedestrian fatality, RAIB report released

1 Oct

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has published the report of its independent investigation into the fatal accident which occurred at Bayles and Wylies footpath level crossing, Bestwood, Nottingham on November 28th, 2012. The accident occurred at about 19.00 when a young person who was using the crossing over the tramway was struck and fatally injured by a tram that was travelling at 70 kpLXinfoImage1199-Bayles & Wylies Footpath level crossing (tramway)h (43 mph).

The young person moved into the path of the tram as it approached the crossing and appeared to be unaware of the tram’s approach. The RAIB has been unable to positively establish why she seemingly did not see and react to the approaching tram or respond to the horn. Apart from a break of 0.3 seconds, this was sounded continuously as she walked towards and onto the tram track. Closed-circuit television coverage from the front of the tram indicates that she did not look towards the tram after she entered the crossing through a chicane on its west side. However, there is no clear evidence to indicate what actions she took at the chicane; it is possible that she may not have looked towards the approaching tram, or looked but not seen it. Furthermore, although there is no direct evidence, it cannot be ruled out that she saw the tram approaching and thought that she had enough time to
cross, or that it would stop or slow down.

The Bayles and Wylies footpath level crossing consisted of two separately managed crossings of the
Nottingham tramway and a parallel Network Rail route. Network Rail closed the crossing in February 2013 pending the construction of a footbridge to replace it. This obviated the need for the RAIB to make any recommendations to improve the crossing.

The RAIB has made four recommendations. These cover the manner in which persons in the path of a tram are audibly warned; the marking of the boundary of pedestrian crossings of tramways; the prompts to pedestrians to look for approaching trams; and the best means to illuminate pedestrian crossings to avoid glare that could affect the ability of pedestrians to detect approaching trams.

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