It is now two years since the tragic derailment at Sandilands on London Tramlink which saw seven people die as a result of the tram coming off the rails as a result of it overspeeding. On the anniversary of the tragedy Transport for London have given an update into progress on the 15 recommendations the RAIB made in their full investigation report with some local politicians and those affected by the incident having recently been criticising the perceived lack of progress to improve safety on the network.
In a statement TfL have said: “We have made significant progress on the recommendations for London and have completed some of the most vital. Some of the recommendations set out by the RAIB
require the implementation of new systems and technology not seen on the UK’s trams before, and so significant designing, testing and procurement, including seeking out innovative manufacturers who can transform tram safety, has been needed.
We continue to work alongside the wider tram industry to ensure all of the recommendations outlined are met as quickly as possible.”
There is not the space here to list all of the recommendations again and the progress which has been made bit some of the key updates include:
A new UK wide body to enable cooperation on matters relating to safety and the development of common standards and good practice guidance
A steering group has been established preparing for the establishment of a Safety Standards Board to provide regulation and consistency of safety standards across the industry
UK tram operators, owners and infrastructure managers should work together to review, develop and install suitable measures to automatically reduce tram speeds if approaching higher risk locations at speeds which could result in derailment
A tender has been issued for a system that will automatically apply brakes. The contract is expected to be awarded by the end of the year with full implementation by December 2019.
A system capable of reliably detecting driver attention state and initiating automatic responses if low level of alertness is identified
A Driver Protection Device was fully implemented in October 2017. This detects and prevents fatigue and distraction.
Signage, lighting and other visual information cues should be reviewed on the approach to higher risk locations such as tight curves
Shortly after the derailment additional speed restrictions and associated signage was installed both at Sandilands at three other locations on the network. A permanent speed restriction was also applied on the entire system. Enhanced chevron signs were installed at the four sites. It is also planned that a new system called iTram will also be installed to all trams by December 2019 which will give drivers an in cab speed alert.
* The full update can be viewed on the Transport for London website.