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SOUTHALL: Great Western Trains Trial

£1.5M record fine for GWT

railtec : Tuesday, July 27, 1999


Great Western Trains has been fined a record £1.5 million at the Old Bailey today.
The company had pleaded guilty to an offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act related to an accident in 1997 which killed 7 people and injured 150 others.

The Swansea to London train had been allowed to operate despite the fact that two vital warning systems were inoperative. The judge, Mr Justice Scott-Baker heard earlier that although the company accepted responsibility for not acting on a report that the systems weren't working it was not the major cause of the accident.

In levying the fine the judge said GWT had not provided the level of safety that the public had a right to expect. The fine was meant to be a message to all railway companies that "eternal vigilence" is necessary.

At an earlier hearing, GWT and the driver of the train were found not guilty on manslaughter charges.

A Health & Safety Executive inquiry into the accident has been delayed pending the criminal prosecutions.

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SOUTHALL: Great Western Trains Trial
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