Saturday, 3 May 2014

Bassetlaw: MP joins call for swift level crossing upgrades after accident inquest . . .


Bassetlaw: MP joins call for swift level crossing upgrades after accident inquest

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Images from the RAIB report, published on 24/9/13, into the fatal crash at the Beech Hill level crossing near Finningley on 4/12/12 where four-year-old Emma Lifsey was killed. The approach to the level crossing taken the following day at a similar time to the crash, showing difficulties in visibility with wet roads and low sunlight.

Bassetlaw MP John Mann has joined a coroner in praising a bereaved family’s ‘strength and determination’ in the wake of a tragic railway crash.

An inquest this week ruled that little Emma Lifsey, aged four, died due to an accident on a level crossing at Beech Hill crossing, Misson Springs, Bassetlaw, in December 2012.

Emma, of Blackmoor Road, Haxey, was in a car driven by her grandmother, Dianne Jarrett, when it went through the automatic barrier and collided with a passenger train on the Doncaster-Lincoln line.

Hugh Barton, an optical consultant, told the inquest that the 36 watt filament bulbs on the Beech Hill level crossing were the “worst red lights he had seen at a level crossing.”

Witnesses at the scene, including Emma’s grandmother herself, said the lights were not visible against the glare of the sun on the wet road that day.

Assistant coroner Heidi Connor concluded the three day inquest on Thursday saying she accepted Network Rail had made some improvements to crossings using this type of light, but that they needed to make changes more quickly.

After the collision the Rail Accident Investigation Branch sent out an urgent safety measure message saying the 36W bulbs should be changed.

John Mann MP said: “I would like to echo the coroner’s praise of Emma Lifsey’s family for their strength and determination to ensure that her legacy will be safer level crossings.”

“Network Rail now needs to urgently speed up its programme to ensure that this terrible accident is never repeated.”

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