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Drivers to receive more training after Lingwood rail crossing crash

PUBLISHED: 07:23 10 April 2015 | UPDATED: 12:34 10 April 2015

Scene of an incident at Station Road, Lingwood involving a train striking the level crossing barriers.

Picture: James Bass

Scene of an incident at Station Road, Lingwood involving a train striking the level crossing barriers. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk © 2014

Drivers will get more training after a rail crossing crash in a Norfolk village.

A Norwich to Great Yarmouth train, which was clearing leaves off the line on October 31, smashed through the closed barriers and across Station Road in Lingwood.

The investigation by Network Rail found driver error was the immediate cause of the accident.

No one was hurt, but the potential for future tragedy has caused serious concern in the community.

Now Keith Simpson, parliamentary candidate for Broadland, had said the area must “never again” face this potential for tragedy.

He said: “It was a very serious incident and I think local people were shaken up by it. There are lessons to learn from this to prevent it from happening again.”

The driver, who is employed by Direct Rail Services (DRS), faces additional training in the aftermath of the crash.

Chris Connelly, commercial and business development director said: “As part of normal routine procedures, DRS has fully participated in the Network Rail lead investigation.

“As the report concludes, a combination of infrastructure and human error contributed to the event. In addition to the recommendations made on how the infrastructure failures should be remedied, DRS has re-briefed and re-trained the driver in question and incorporated any lessons from this event into its ongoing training programme.”

Network Rail took five months to report its findings, which many people felt was too long for such a serious incident.

The report found the signal protecting the crossing, which is operated by a crossing keeper, was not showing a clear warning indication on the afternoon of the crash.

If the signal’s indication is not clear, drivers are trained that they should be prepared to stop.

If the driver had followed procedure, the report says, he would have acknowledged a warning horn in the cab and slowed the train down. Under current plans, the signalling on this line is due to be upgraded in 2017.

Do you have a news story about the Broadland area? Call Rosa McMahon on 01603 772453.

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