On 16 February 2008, a child fell from a carriage forming part of the 11:20 hrs train from Wansford to Peterborough on the Nene Valley Railway (NVR). The child sustained minor injuries. The train was travelling at approximately 20 mph (32 km/h) at the time of the incident.
The accident happened because the carriage doors are fitted with internal handles. The carriage was of Danish origin, and the NVR is the only UK operator of such carriages. The child was probably able to open both the door deadlock and slam lock handles. There were no warning signs about the risk posed by the door handles.
RAIB has made one recommendation to NVR; the NVR have taken action. The recommendation relates to measures to reduce the risk of accidental opening of doors on their ex-Danish carriages and any others in their fleet employing internal door handles, such as modifying the handles and posting warning signs.
RAIB has also notified the European Rail Agency of its findings so that other railways in Europe that might use carriages with these door handles are aware of the risks from them.
Response to recommendations:
- RAIB will periodically update the status of recommendations as reported to us by the relevant safety authority or public body.
- RAIB may add comment, particularly if we have concerns regarding these responses.