Report 08/2009: Uncontrolled movement of a road vehicle in a channel tunnel passenger shuttle train

Uncontrolled movement of a road vehicle in a channel tunnel passenger shuttle train, 4 April 2008.


On 4 April 2008, as the 17:06 hrs Cheriton to Coquelles passenger shuttle departed from the UK terminal of the Channel Tunnel, a road coach moved within the rail vehicle.

The driver of the coach was injured as he attempted to arrest the movement of the coach. There were no other injuries, although the position of passengers behind the coach immediately before it moved gave rise to the potential for injury.

The RAIB investigation identified the immediate cause as the coach not being sufficiently restrained against movement. It has not been possible to establish with certainty the circumstances which led to this situation, but the absence of the correct chocks and the difficulty of the shuttle crew in confirming the state of the controls of a road vehicle possibly contributed to the cause of the accident.

As a consequence of this accident, RAIB has made three recommendations to Eurotunnel, relating to the availability of the correct chocks, the communications with coach drivers, and to warning passengers not to remain in the vehicle roadway during the transit of the Channel Tunnel.

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.

RAIB Recommendation response for Channel Tunnel (2009).

Updates to this page

Published 10 December 2014