Archive | Accident reports

A day like any other? Christmas Days 1911-14

Network Rail’s recent promo video about the engineering works currently taking place this Christmas is a good reminder that there’s always something happening on our railway network – and that means staff at work. Where there’s work, sadly, there’s danger, even with a greatly reduced passenger service: as well all know, there’s plenty more to […]

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Jump! When can you abandon your loco?

What the ‘Railway Work, Life & Death’ database shows really nicely – and importantly – is how numerous the ‘mundane’ accidents were: the cases that injured or killed workers in their ones or twos, but which cumulatively produced a total number of casualties far in excess of the passengers who were affected by accidents. In […]

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Reading goods

Last week I attended an interesting workshop at the University of Reading, looking at the history of freight transport. It touched upon all modes of transport, though rail featured extensively – and occasionally safety issues cropped up, like the photograph of workers on top of a container, trying to secure a load that was in […]

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Explore your Archive week – a case from the archive: road safety on the railway

As well as this being ‘Explore your Archive’ week, it’s also Road Safety Week, run by the charity Brake. Road accidents remain a major source of casualties in the UK, and a part of this relates to occupational road risks. Although we might not expect it, road accidents are a source of concern for the […]

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Explore your Archive week – a case from the archive: pinched feet

As part of Explore your Archive week we’re going to be bringing you a couple of cases taken from the Railway Work, Life & Death project spreadsheet of railway worker accidents between 1911 and 1915. The spreadsheet was compiled by volunteers at the National Railway Museum, one of the project partners, drawn from reports produced […]

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Rule-breaking and its consequences – 1

In most cases, the people judged (by the companies or the Railway Inspectors) to have caused an accident were the ones who suffered. Presumably this was deemed punishment enough for any rule-breaking, as the state reports rarely make reference to any sanctions being imposed – though the company records may record this, as it was […]

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Where are the workshop workers?

In the cases we’ve highlighted so far on this blog, one type of railway worker has been absent: the workshop or factory employee. These were the workers who were employed in the locomotive, carriage and wagon works at the hearts of many of the systems – Derby, Crewe, York, Eastleigh, Gorton, Swindon, Cowlairs and the […]

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