UK: Driver, Operator and TfL to be Prosecuted over Sandilands Tram Derailment

Following a thorough investigation into the fatal 2016 Sandilands tram derailment, the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has launched prosecutions for breaches of health and safety law.

derailed-tram-croydon
Image of derailed tram at Sandilands Junction © GOV.UK

On the morning of Wednesday 9 November 2016, a tram carrying 69 passengers derailed and overturned on the bend approaching the Sandilands junction in Croydon.

The incident led to the death of seven people and injuries to over 50 of the travellers.

The ORR, the health and safety regulator for the UK’s railway, alleges that TfL and Tram Operations Limited failed to ensure the health and safety of passengers on the Croydon Tramlink network, so far as reasonably practicable.

This would be a breach of section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

Alfred Dorris, the driver of the tram at the time of the incident, is accused of an alleged failure as an employee to take reasonable care of passengers whilst employed at work driving the tram, a breach of section 7(a) of the same act.

Ian Prosser, HM Chief Inspector of Railways at the ORR, said:

“My thoughts are with the families of the seven people who lost their lives on 9 November 2016, the many more injured and everyone whose lives have been impacted as a result of this incident.

“Following a detailed and thorough investigation, we’ve taken the decision to prosecute Transport for London, Tram Operations Limited and driver Alfred Dorris for what we believe to be health and safety failings.

“We’ve made a fair, independent and objective assessment about what happened, and it is now for the court to consider if any health and safety law has been breached.”

A hearing will take place at Croydon Magistrates’ Court on a currently undecided future date.

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