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Rail Accident Investigation Branch publishes Annual Report for 2022

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The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has published its annual report covering the period 1 January to 31 December 2022. The report summarises operational and investigative activity undertaken by the Branch during the year.

The report also highlights six recurring safety themes which have run through the Branch’s work during 2022. These are: the safety of track workers, railway operations, the management of bad weather, the safety of people getting on and off trains, safety at level crossings, and the management of low adhesion.

During 2022, 461 notifications were received by the RAIB, from which 45 events were identified as requiring a preliminary examination to determine the most appropriate response. The Branch deployed on 22 occasions to carry out a preliminary examination of the site. From these preliminary examinations 11 investigations and nine safety digests were started.

RAIB published 14 full investigation reports during 2022, along with eight safety digests, four letters to coroners, one letter to industry and issued one interim report. RAIB made 67 safety recommendations to 77 different organisations across the rail industry including operators, manufacturers, and other authorities.

Andrew Hall, chief inspector of rail accidents, said: “In March 2022, we published our report into the catastrophic derailment at Carmont which made 20 recommendations. In addition RAIB published a report into a fatal accident involving a track worker at Surbiton in 2022 and subsequently, in early 2023, reports into fatal accidents involving a train driver at West Worthing and a member of the public at Lady Howard level crossing in Surrey. Such accidents devastate the lives of families and friends of those who lost their lives. Other accidents we have investigated also involved injury, trauma and loss. While relatively rare, such events still have life- affecting and far-reaching consequences for those involved.

“The railway is statistically very safe, but we must still look very carefully at what causes accidents and affects their consequences. This is one of the most important ways by which the railway has historically improved safety and reduced harm, and rightly continues to do so.”

The full report can be found here.

Image credit: RAIB

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