Lancashire

Preston train crash caused by trainee driver's brake error

Train and buffer Image copyright Crown
Image caption The report said the train was travelling at 6mph when it hit the buffer

A train crashed into a buffer at a railway station because a trainee driver "under supervision" accelerated instead of braking, a report has said.

Two crew members and 13 passengers were hurt when the Northern train from Leeds hit a buffer while coming to a stop at Preston station on 1 April.

The Rail Accident Investigation Branch found the driver's mentor noticed the error but could not prevent it.

Northern said it had implemented the report's safety message.

The 12:27 service from Leeds to Blackpool North was terminating at Preston's platform C due to engineering works when the crash happened.

Image copyright Mark Ormerod
Image caption The collision caused damage to the buffer and the train

The report said the train was travelling at 6mph (10km/h).

It said the trainee "applied the power controller in error" and when he realised, "there was not enough time to avert a collision".

His mentor, who was sitting in the other side of the cab, noticed the mistake and "called to him to brake, but was unable to intervene to avert the accident", it added.

Mark Ormerod, who was standing on a platform opposite, said the train did not seem to slow enough and made a "very loud bang".

Investigators said no further action would be taken as safety recommendations had been issued following a similar incident at King's Cross station in 2015.

Rail firm Northern said it acknowledged the report adding: "We have already reviewed and implemented the safety messages contained within it."

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