September 2, 2011 | Mark Paradies

UK Rail Accident Investigation Branch Press Release: Investigation into a fatal accident at Piccadilly Gardens, on the Manchester Metrolink tramway, on 5 June 2011

The RAIB is carrying out an investigation into a fatal accident that occurred at Piccadilly Gardens, in central Manchester, on 5 June 2011.  At about 00:16 hrs tram 1002 was approaching Piccadilly Gardens, from the direction of Market Street, at a speed of about 9 mph (15 km/h) when a pedestrian ran into the path of the tram.  The pedestrian appeared to try to stop before reaching the track but fell directly in front of the tram.  The front part of the tram passed over the fallen pedestrian.  Although the tram had started to brake before reaching the pedestrian, it did not come to a complete stand before the pedestrian had come into contact with the under-run protector.  This is a device that projects down from the underside of the tram and is designed to prevent pedestrians from being crushed under the wheels of a tram.
The pedestrian who had fallen under the tram was found by rescuers to be in close contact with the under-run protector.  He was removed from under the tram and given emergency treatment at site.  Unfortunately, he later died in hospital of his injuries.

The investigation will seek to understand the mechanism by which the injuries were caused to the pedestrian and the role played by the under-run protector.  It will also review the history of accidents of this type on tramways.

The RAIB’s investigation is independent of any investigations by the police and the safety authority (the Office of Rail Regulation).

The RAIB will publish a report, including any recommendations to improve safety, at the conclusion of its investigation. This report will be available on the RAIB website.

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