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Paddington signal could be obscured

  : Friday, October 29, 1999
The signal that Thames Turbo passed at danger could be obscured from the driver a new
report has revealed today.

Bob Smallwood, the deputy chief inspector of railways for the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), told a news conference today (29 October) that depending on the height and position of a driver his or her vision of signal SN109 "could be intermittently interrupted by the overhead electrical system". This was the signal that the driver of the Thames "Turbo" passed at danger immediately befor his train collided, head-on with an Intercity 125 on 5 October 1999. Thirty people died and a further 145 injured in the worst accident on Britain's railways in nearly 10 years.

Mr Smallwood told reporters that signal was not at fault and that it was clear that it had been passed at danger. After passing it, the train accelerated to 50 mph. It went into "neutral" just before the collision and the emergency brakes were applied. Why the train did not stop is not yet clear. The reasons "are going to be complex" he said.

Web Sources
Paddington black box secrets revealed
Yahoo 29 Oct 99
London Train Crash Driver 'Tried To Stop'
Yahoo 29 Oct 99

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