Report 02/2022: Carmont commuter train derails – Summary

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Report 02/2022: A commuter train derails in Carmont

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Report 02/2022: A passenger train derails in Carmont – high resolution

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At approximately 09:37 on Wednesday 12 August 2020, a passenger train derailed near Carmont, Aberdeenshire. The train, number 1T08, was the 06:38 hour service from Aberdeen to Glasgow, which was heading back towards Aberdeen due to a blockage reported on the front line. She was traveling at 73 mph (117 km/h), just under the normal speed of the line in question. After the train derailed, it swerved to the left, before hitting the railing of the bridge causing the vehicles to scatter. Tragically, three people died as a result of the accident and six others were injured on the train.

On the morning of the accident, there was almost continuous heavy rain at the accident site between about 06:00 and 09:00. The average rainfall of 51.5 mm in this period at the accident site was close to the average August rainfall for this part of Scotland. Train 1T08 derailed because it collided with debris that was washed out of a drain ditch. This trench, which was built between 2011 and 2012, contains a perforated pipe that was installed as part of a project to address a known drainage and cut stability issue in that area. However, the drainage system and associated earthworks were not built to the original design and were therefore not able to safely accommodate the water flows that morning.

RAIB investigators found that a low ground bank (bond) was created running through a slope that leads into the track. The presence of this beam has significantly altered the water flow so that heavy rainfall causes a concentrated flow in the steep section of the trench. Evidence indicates that the intensity and duration of rainfall could have generated water flows in the trench that were sufficient to wash away the gravel backfill and the land immediately surrounding the trench.

No instructions were given by the route control or by indicating that the 1T08 should run at a lower speed on its journey between Carmont and Stonehaven. At the time there was no written process requiring any such precautions in these circumstances. Thus, normal railroad rules were applied to train traffic. The RAIB investigation found that the ‘road watchers’ (who were responsible for the operational management of Scotland’s rail network) did not receive the information, procedures or training they needed to effectively manage complex situations of the kind encountered on the morning of 12 August 2020.

Recommendations

As a result of this accident, RAIB made 20 recommendations to improve railway safety. Areas covered include:

  • Better management of civil engineering construction activities by Network Rail and its contractors
  • Additional Standards and Guidelines for the Safe Design of Drainage Systems
  • Improving operational response to extreme rainfall events, harnessing the full potential of modern technology, and based on a detailed understanding of the risks associated with heavy rainfall
  • Enhancing the ability of path control offices to effectively manage complex events
  • Expand the Network Rail guarantee system to include road control offices
  • Addressing obstacles to the effective implementation of lessons learned from accident and accident investigation
  • Measures to prevent derailed trains from veering too far from the track (tracking equipment and/or trains)
  • Address train design issues identified by the investigation and better understand the additional risks associated with operating older trains.

Video summary, including a digital visualization of the incident

A passenger train derailed in Carmont

Visualize the performance of the sewer system in Carmont on August 12, 2020

perception whitening

Simon French, Chief Rail Accident Inspector, said:

“This was a tragedy that devastated the lives of the three families who lost loved ones and brought horror and injury to six more on the morning of August 12, 2020. Our thoughts are with all of them. Nothing can undo this event, but we owe it to everyone affected by seeking to learn safety lessons for the future.

“Although UK rail safety has steadily improved over recent decades, the tragedy at Carmont is a reminder of how disruptive and dangerous the volatile British weather can be. The rail industry needs to get smarter about how it confronts this threat, and that It makes better use of cutting-edge technology that enables forecasting and tracking of extreme weather events such as summer heat storms.There is also an urgent need for rail to provide decision makers in real time with the information, actions, and training they need to manage complex and large-scale weather events across the rail network.

“No one wants to shut down the railways every time it rains. The railways need to operate safely and reliably in most weather conditions. If they cannot achieve that, potential passengers will be forced down the roads, which are undoubtedly more dangerous in weather conditions. The bad So, there is a balance to be struck and technology can help to get that balance right.Modern weather forecasting and monitoring systems can detect truly exceptional events before and when they happen, allowing rail operators to implement precautionary measures when it is wise to do so. This would benefit line safety (by restricting train speeds, or suspending operations, when necessary) while reducing the need for blanket speed restrictions to be imposed on areas that are not at high risk.

“This investigation highlights the dangers of uncontrolled changes to the railway infrastructure during construction. It is very sad that a project that was designed to protect the traveling public has become unsuitable for its intended use and poses a danger to trains due to these uncontrolled changes in design. Anything in difficult conditions, such as a very steep cutting side, changes are often required for practical reasons.Although these changes are normal and can be very beneficial in terms of time and cost savings, they need to be made carefully in each case. , the original designer needs to understand the proposed change and review the implications of a change that may seem insignificant to the team on site. I hope this example will resonate throughout the UK construction industry.

“It is important for all of us in the rail industry not to dismiss this truly horrific incident as a one-time event. The rail industry needs to think about the implications of severe weather on its infrastructure, while also considering the behavior of trains in the event of derailment after hitting obstacles such as Drifts and landslides.Is there more that can be done to keep trains in line and closer to the track, to reduce stab risks and to keep wagons attached to rail vehicles?RAIB doesn’t have all the answers but it is urging the rail industry to consider ways to steer trains that have gone off the beaten path. track, and reflect on the long-term implications of continuing to operate gigs that are ahead of modern standards.”

Note to editors

  1. The sole purpose of RAIB investigations is to prevent future accidents and accidents and to improve railroad safety. RAIB does not assign blame or liability or carry out prosecutions.
  2. RAIB operates, as far as possible, in an open and transparent manner. While our investigations are completely independent of the rail industry, we maintain close contact with rail companies, and if we discover matters that may affect rail safety, we make sure to circulate information about them to the right people as soon as possible, and certainly before long. Who published our final report.
  3. For media inquiries, please call 01932 440015.

News date: March 10, 2022

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