Tebay rail deaths anniversary: Network Rail in new safety spend

Left to right: Chris Waters, Colin Buckley and Darren Burgess. Photo given out by families after the incident Chris Waters, Colin Buckley and Darren Burgess were killed in the crash, along with Gary Tindall

Related Stories

Network Rail is spending £5m to improve the safety of its road-rail vehicles, it has announced on the eighth anniversary of a fatal crash.

On 15 February 2004, a 16-tonne wagon broke free and sped down Shap Summit killing four men working on the West Coast Main Line, near Tebay, Cumbria.

The Rail Maritime and Transport union said it had been in talks with Network Rail since to prevent another accident.

Extra disc brakes will be fitted to more than 300 road-rail vehicles.

Road-rail vehicles are flat trolleys on railway wheels that are used to move materials to and from railway worksites.

A secondary protection and warning system will also be developed as part of the project.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: "Today we remember our colleagues who so tragically lost their lives because of the safety failures at Tebay on that dark, early morning eight years ago.

"Today we are demanding that Network Rail stop prevaricating and give us a definitive timetable for the guaranteed introduction of the secondary protection system.

"On this day, of all days, we will accept nothing less."

The scene of a rail accident. Photo: Owen Humphreys, PA A commemoration will be staged close to the village later to mark the anniversary

The men were hit by a trolley unit carrying rail lines which had come loose from a works train at Tebay Old Yard, between Kendal and Penrith.

Gary Tindall, 46, from Tebay, Chris Waters, 53, of Morecambe, Lancashire, Colin Buckley, 49, of Carnforth, Lancashire, and Darren Burgess, 30, of Carnforth all died in the incident.

Five others were injured.

A Network Rail spokesman said: "Safety is paramount in everything we do, which is why all the recommendations made by the Railway Safety and Standards Board following their investigation of the incident have been fully implemented.

"In addition to those, there are a number of work streams in progress to deliver solutions aimed at reducing the risk posed by runaway vehicles and the RMT is actively involved in these.

"Our long-term strategy includes the development of a new generation of road-rail vehicles designed specifically for railway use."

A commemoration will be staged close to the village later to mark the anniversary.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Cumbria



Min. Night 7 °C

Features & Analysis

  • Cartoon of women chatting on the metroChat wagon

    The interesting things you hear in a women-only carriage

  • Replica of a cargo boxSpecial delivery

    The man who posted himself to the other side of the world

  • Music scoreFinal score Watch

    Goodbye to NYC's last classical sheet music shop

  • Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton checks her Blackberry from a desk inside a C-17 military plane upon her departure from Malta, in the Mediterranean Sea, bound for Tripoli, Libya'Emailgate'

    Hillary gets a taste of scrutiny that lies ahead

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Woman standingMysterious miracle

    It's extremely unusual and shouldn't give false hope, but what makes the body beat cancer on its own?


  • A cyborg cockroachClick Watch

    The cyborg cockroach - why has a computer been attached to this insect’s nervous system?

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.