Network Rail is being prosecuted for the Grayrigg train derailment in 2007, which caused the death of one passenger and injuries to 86 people.

The ORR has started criminal proceedings against Network Rail for a breach of health and safety law which caused the derailment. The charge is of failure to provide and implement suitable and sufficient standards, procedures, guidance, training, tools and resources for inspection and maintenance of fixed stretcher-bar points.

Ian Prosser, director of railway safety at ORR, said: “ORR has conducted a thorough investigation into whether criminal proceedings should be brought in relation to the train derailment near Grayrigg on 23 February 2007, which caused the death of Mrs Masson and injured 86 people.

“Following the coroner’s inquest into the death of Mrs Masson, I have concluded that there is enough evidence, and that it is in the public interest, to bring criminal proceedings against Network Rail for a serious breach of health and safety law which led to the train derailment.

“My thoughts are with the family of Mrs Masson and those injured in this incident. ORR will do everything it can to ensure that the prosecution proceeds as quickly as possible.

“The railway today is as safe as it has ever been but there can be no room for complacency. The entire rail industry must continue to strive for improvements to ensure that public safety is never put at risk.”

The first hearing is due to take place at Lancaster Magistrates’ Court on February 24.

Author's Bio: 

Roy Rowlands writes for Rail Technology Magazine an independent technical trade journal for the UK rail industry offering a wide view of rail news views and opinions, he also writes for a rail jobs board reporting on the latest trends in rail recruitment