Firms prosecuted over Potters Bar rail crash

NETWORK Rail and maintenance firm Jarvis Rail are to be prosecuted over the Potters Bar rail crash, it has been announced today (Wednesday).

Criminal proceedings for breaches of health and safety law have been started by the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR).

The prosecutions follow the conclusion of the inquest and ORR’s investigation into the derailment on May 10, 2002, in which seven people were killed.

Ian Prosser, director of rail safety at ORR, said: “The conclusion of the recent inquest into the derailment at Potters Bar has allowed the regulator to make a decision on whether any enforcement action should be brought in relation to the incident.

“I have decided there is enough evidence, and it is in the public interest, to prosecute Network Rail and Jarvis Rail for serious health and safety breaches.

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“For the sake of the families involved, we will do all we can to ensure the prosecutions proceed as quickly as possible.”

Mr Prosser added: “The railway today is as safe as it has ever been, but there can be no room for complacency. Where failings are found those at fault must be held to account – and the entire rail industry must continue to strive for improvements to ensure that public safety is never put at a similar risk again.”

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The first appearance is due to take place at West Herts Magistrates’ Court in Watford on January 7.

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