Potters Bar rail crash carriage ‘was like tumble dryer’
A SERVICEMAN has flown in from Kuwait to give evidence at the inquest into the deaths of those killed in the Potters Bar rail tragedy.
Martin Rose had been travelling in the first class compartment of the ill-fated 12.45 service from King’s Cross to King’s Lynn on May 10, 2002.
The train derailed, killing seven people and injuring 76 others.
Among the dead were South Mimms grandmother Agnes Quinlivan, who was killed when debris from the crash hit her as she walked under a railway bridge.
Mr Rose told the inquest about the moment he knew the train had derailed: “There was the judder, there was the bouncing and then there was other movement of the carriage.”
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He added: “I came out of my seat, not voluntarily. The carriage went, it was a feeling of weightlessness, which I understand quite well, being aircrew. So momentarily, sort of negative G, I floated up out of the seat.”
Mr Rose grabbed a luggage rack to stop him flying around the carriage.
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He said: “It was enough to save my life, I would suggest. Because had I not, with the rate of momentum, knowing what happened to the gentleman who subsequently impacted the bulkhead, I don’t think I would have survived.”
Mr Rose said the impact was like being in a tumble dryer.
Following the crash, Mr Rose went on to help many other passengers on the train.
The inquest, which is expected to last two months, also heard that the train driver shouted: “I have lost everything... we are off the rails,” moments before the crash.
Signal inspector Roger Badger told the inquest driver Gordon Gibson made the remark shortly before the train derailed.