Press Release from the UK Rail Accident Investigation Branch: Serious Accident Injures a Track Worker, Near West Drayton, London Borough of Hillingdon, 22 March 2013
The RAIB is investigating a serious accident which occurred on a four track section of the Great Western main Line, near West Drayton, approximately 12½ miles west of London Paddington, on Friday 22 March 2013.
At around 10:37 hrs, the 09:07 hrs First Great Western service from Oxford to London Paddington was passing between West Drayton and Hayes & Harlington when it struck and seriously injured a track worker. The worker was employed through a labour agency and was part of a group undertaking survey work on or near railway lines which remained open to traffic. His role at the time of the accident was that of ‘intermediate lookout’.
The role of the intermediate lookout was to observe a ‘distant lookout’ and pass on any warnings of approaching trains to a ‘site lookout’ positioned with the people undertaking work on or near the line. When undertaking these duties he was required to look for westbound trains while standing in a position of safety at all times.
The RAIB’s investigation will consider the sequence of events that led to the accident and the factors that caused the intermediate lookout to undertake his duties when standing too close to the line used by eastbound trains. It will also review the planning of the work, its management on site, training and competency.
The RAIB’s investigation is independent of any investigation by the safety authority (the Office of Railway Regulation) or the British Transport Police.
The RAIB will publish its findings, including any recommendations to improve safety, at the conclusion of its investigation. This report will be available on the RAIB website.