Following the RailStaff Awards event on October 5, Global Rail News is taking a look at each of this year’s worthy winners.
Lifesaver wins Train Driver of the Year
A Southern train driver who saved the life of a young girl who jumped in front of his train has been named Train Driver of the Year.
Adam Osborne-Hall was driving the 23:15 from London Victoria to Tattenham Corner on January 9 this year when a 15-year-old girl threw herself in front of his train. Adam slammed on the breaks but was unable to stop in time and the girl became stuck under the wheels.
After getting out of his cab, Adam went back down the train and found the girl alive but badly hurt with serious leg injuries.
During this time Adam engaged the young girl in conversation to stop her from going to sleep and took the time to discuss why she had tried to kill herself for a fifth time.
Although the girl suffered a broken leg, fractured pelvis and lost fingers, her situation could have become a lot worse if not for the action taken by Adam.
Nominating Adam, colleague Andy Harrowell said: “He showed true courage by deciding to leave his cab and spend time with the girl, talking to her to ensure she remained conscious while help was on its way. He went further than just keeping her comfortable by helping her to reconsider her outlook on life.”
Adam, 27, said: “I’d like to thank my immediate family – they get the brunt of anything that happens at work,’ says Adam, 27.
“Thanks as well to my manager, Paul Simpson. I think this was the first time he’d dealt with an incident of this kind.”
Tom O’Connor, managing director of event organiser Rail Media, said: “This is a sad story but one full of compassion and kindness. Not only did Adam Osborne-Hall save this child’s life but by talking to her hopefully changed her outlook on life.
“His actions that night personify kindness and caring. This award is highly deserved.”
Bob Wright, chairman of award sponsors FT Transformers, said: “Out of all the sponsorships, I think the best one is Train Driver of the Year because we put our trust in train drivers on a daily basis.
“Hopefully with his intervention, Adam’s helped her to improve her life and want to live on.”
London Underground HR team wins national award
A London Underground HR team, attracting new people to the industry and retaining the skills of many more, has won this year’s HR Team of the Year Award at the RailStaff Awards 2013.
Vanessa Long of Transport for London (TfL) said: “Significant skills shortages are becoming more and more apparent in the rail industry and if left unaddressed, delivery of future programmes will become increasingly challenging.”
Among the team’s programmes is ‘Classroom to Boardroom’ which encourages children to take science, technology engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects and to promote the transport industry and engineering as a career choice.
Pupils were set real industry challenges and asked to present their findings to a TfL panel at the London Transport Museum.
As a result, the TfL apprentice programme is now over subscribed.
Tom O’Connor, managing director of event organiser Rail Media, said: “Helping staff build better careers for the future is in everyone’s interests. Strategic Resourcing has pioneered several initiatives which will help attract the skilled people we need and retain those already contributing to the industry.”
James Lloyd, Steven Mills, Steve Foster, Penny St Martin, and Patricia Holgate were surprised and delighted by the award.
“We’d like to thank our colleagues and the parts of the business we’ve been lucky enough to work with,” said James.
“We have also had great support from the wider rail industry who we’ve collaborated with,” added Patricia Holgate.
Asif Ahmed, managing director of RailwayPeople.com, said: “The phenomenal efforts made by London Underground’s Strategic Resourcing Team go a considerable way to making good the skills shortfall the rail industry is now dealing with.
“It is a challenge and Strategic Resourcing not only helps fill the gap by what they do but their ideas and efforts are feeding into an industry-wide campaign to attract and retain top quality staff. Very well deserved.”
Southend Central station worker takes home industry award
Ashley Cosker, who works for c2c at Southend Central, has won this year ‘s Outstanding Customer Service Award at the rail industry ‘s national RailStaff Awards.
When a passenger lost his phone on a train Ashley used new technology and old fashioned friendliness to track it down.
Ashley, who was presented with the award at Birmingham’s ICC on October 5, realised he could activate an app on his phone that would allow the pair to trace the lost iPhone ‘s location. Ashley pinpointed the phone in a road nearby the station.
After pinpointing the phone in a nearby road, Ashley and the distraught passenger set off, zeroing in on the missing phone which appeared to be in a college building. The pair entered the college and asked about the phone at reception. In fact the phone had been handed in by a student travelling on the train earlier.
“I’d like to thank all the people who nominated and voted for me, and my work colleagues. Also my fiancée Karen for supporting me and keeping me on track,” said Ashley, who joined the industry eight years ago.
Tom O Connor, managing director of Rail Media, said: “This is a great story. It reads like something out of spy thriller. It is not just e-ticketing and information apps we see being put to good use by train companies but railway staff think on their feet and use the latest in new technologies to push the boundaries of customer service. Congratulations to Ashley Cosker.”
Presenting the award, Kamal Basra of Bodyguard Workwear, which sponsored the Outstanding Customer Service Award, said: “The rail industry is a very challenging place and there are so many people who work very, very hard behind the scenes and are quite often unaccounted for.
“As a service provider, we also understand how difficult it can be managing people’s expectations and by sponsoring this award we are able to recognise the achievements of special people in this industry.”