No-stop train driver 'was on phone'
AN EXPRESS train went through a stop signal and carried on for almost a mile because the driver was using a mobile phone, it has emerged.The shocking incident saw the Anglia Railways train pass more than 1,200m through the red light at Claydon, near Ipswich.
AN EXPRESS train went through a stop signal and carried on for almost a mile because the driver was using a mobile phone, it has emerged.
The shocking incident saw the Anglia Railways train pass more than 1,200m through the red light at Claydon, near Ipswich.
Rail bosses have investigated the incident, on December 29, and the driver has been disciplined - but not sacked.
Anglia Railways chiefs have now re-issued key safety advice to employees, warning them of spot checks and disciplinary action for anyone flouting the rules.
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A circular sent by Anglia driver and operations manager Bob Broadhead to staff following the SPAD (signal passed at danger) said that the incident was "potentially catastrophic".
He added: "A recent formal inquiry into a Category A SPAD involving an Anglia driver has concluded that the cause of the incident was that the driver had become distracted whilst making a call on his mobile phone.
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"There was a real potential for catastrophic incident to have taken place."
It continued: "The use of a mobile phone by the driver whilst the train is in motion is strictly prohibited.
"Any driver found to be using either a company or personal mobile phone whilst the train is in motion will be liable to formal disciplinary action."
Peter Meades, a spokesman for Anglia Railways, told the EADT yesterday that it was thought fewer than 100 passengers were on the train at the time.
Stressing that mobile phones are issued to staff purely for passenger benefit, he added: "We weren't able to absolutely determine that the train driver was using his mobile phone when he passed the stop signal.
"You could argue that was a technicality, but that was the outcome of the inquiry. At all times in the inquiry we carried out the correct procedures and we involved the Health and Safety Executive.
"There have been disciplinary arrangements, but the train driver was not dismissed."