Commuter killed after falling onto Tube tracks during coronavirus pandemic

An Underground sign (Anthony Devlin/PA)
An Underground sign (Anthony Devlin/PA)

A commuter was killed after falling onto the tracks on the London Underground before being crushed and then hit by a second train, the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has said.

The incident occurred at Waterloo Tube station on May 26 2020, during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, when no staff or other members of the public were present to help the passenger.

An investigation by the RAIB found the man had fallen into a large gap between the platform and the train he had got off at around 10.10am.

After becoming trapped the passenger was crushed by the departing train and was left lying motionless before being hit by a second train entering the station.

The RAIB said, due to the man’s position on the tracks, he was difficult to detect on despatch monitors and was not seen by train operators.

Passenger levels on the Underground on May 26 2020 were 9% of the equivalent day in 2019, according to data from the Department of Transport (DfT).

The investigation concluded that London Underground was not able to identify or provide detailed assessment of all factors, such as curved platforms, that contributed to risks of accidents at certain Tube stations.

The RAIB recommended that ongoing evaluation of existing safety measures be undertaken at stations as well as “periodic” risk assessments for individual locations.