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Amanda Gibb

I am about to copy and paste an email I have already sent directly to Southern to which I am awaiting a reply. Please let me know your thoughts. The alarm began to sound when my daughter was already halfway on the train and my baby was already on board in her buggy. I couldn't leave either of them so was in a very difficult position. I did not have a free hand to pull the emergency alarm and it all happened very quickly.

Dear Sirs,

I am writing to inform you of what could have been a very serious incident involving myself and my children whilst boarding the 15.37 train from Epsom to Dorking earlier today.

I was travelling with my son, aged 11, my daughter aged 3 and my baby daughter aged 9 months.

Whilst attempting to board the train at Epsom station, a very kind member of the public helped me to carry my baby daughter in her pushchair onto the train, leaving my son holding the hand of my daughter on the platform. I then turned to reach across to take my daughter's other hand to help her to board the train whilst my son continued to hold her other hand. I should point out here that there was a very large gap between the train and the edge of the platform and that the train was also a good deal higher than the platform, making this quite a difficult task. My daughter was stepping from the platform onto the train as the doors started to close. My son had her by one hand (still on the platform) and I had her by the other hand inside the train. The doors closed onto my legs and I managed to hold them open for just long enough to squeeze my daughter and my son onto the train which had already started to move. My son's arm and my legs were injured in the process. If we had not acted so quickly, my daughter could easily have slipped down between the train and the platform and, as the train was moving and nobody appeared to have noticed what was going on, I dread to think what could have happened.

The kind passenger who helped us board the train could clearly see how shocked my son and I were. She was very supportive and helped us to leave the train once we arrived at Ashtead. On arriving at Ashtead station, I reported the incident immediately at the ticket office. The gentleman was very kind and filled out a form for me. The other gentleman who was operating the barrier was also very kind and offered us a lift home. Instead, I felt that some fresh air would help me as I felt very shocked and shaken by what had occurred and at the thought of how terrible it could have been had my son and I not taken the action we did to save my daughter.

I would like to know how this could happen. Where was the person responsible for making sure that everyone was safely on board the train before the doors closed and the train started to move? How could this go unnoticed? I have been shaking and feeling quite sick since the incident and my son is upset at the thought of what could have happened to his little sister. I keep envisaging what could have happened and it is very, very distressing.

I can see bruises developing on both my legs and my son says that his right arm hurts,

I await your response.

Yours faithfully,

Amanda Gibb

Problem History

  • 1 Amanda Gibb reported the issue on FixMyTransport. close 21:09 29 Dec 2011
  • 2 Amanda Gibb wrote to Southern close 21:09 29 Dec 2011

    Here is the letter that Amanda Gibb wrote.

    Doors closed on my children!

    I am about to copy and paste an email I have already sent directly to Southern to which I am awaiting a reply. Please let me know your thoughts. The alarm began to sound when my daughter was already halfway on the train and my baby was already on board in her buggy. I couldn't leave either of them so was in a very difficult position. I did not have a free hand to pull the emergency alarm and it all happened very quickly.

    Dear Sirs,

    I am writing to inform you of what could have been a very serious incident involving myself and my children whilst boarding the 15.37 train from Epsom to Dorking earlier today.

    I was travelling with my son, aged 11, my daughter aged 3 and my baby daughter aged 9 months.

    Whilst attempting to board the train at Epsom station, a very kind member of the public helped me to carry my baby daughter in her pushchair onto the train, leaving my son holding the hand of my daughter on the platform. I then turned to reach across to take my daughter's other hand to help her to board the train whilst my son continued to hold her other hand. I should point out here that there was a very large gap between the train and the edge of the platform and that the train was also a good deal higher than the platform, making this quite a difficult task. My daughter was stepping from the platform onto the train as the doors started to close. My son had her by one hand (still on the platform) and I had her by the other hand inside the train. The doors closed onto my legs and I managed to hold them open for just long enough to squeeze my daughter and my son onto the train which had already started to move. My son's arm and my legs were injured in the process. If we had not acted so quickly, my daughter could easily have slipped down between the train and the platform and, as the train was moving and nobody appeared to have noticed what was going on, I dread to think what could have happened.

    The kind passenger who helped us board the train could clearly see how shocked my son and I were. She was very supportive and helped us to leave the train once we arrived at Ashtead. On arriving at Ashtead station, I reported the incident immediately at the ticket office. The gentleman was very kind and filled out a form for me. The other gentleman who was operating the barrier was also very kind and offered us a lift home. Instead, I felt that some fresh air would help me as I felt very shocked and shaken by what had occurred and at the thought of how terrible it could have been had my son and I not taken the action we did to save my daughter.

    I would like to know how this could happen. Where was the person responsible for making sure that everyone was safely on board the train before the doors closed and the train started to move? How could this go unnoticed? I have been shaking and feeling quite sick since the incident and my son is upset at the thought of what could have happened to his little sister. I keep envisaging what could have happened and it is very, very distressing.

    I can see bruises developing on both my legs and my son says that his right arm hurts,

    I await your response.

    Yours faithfully,

    Amanda Gibb

  • 3 Southern Railways Customer Services responded to Amanda Gibb close 21:12 29 Dec 2011
    Dear Sir/Madam,
    Thank you for your email. Your reference number is
    [18850-1325193101]

    We appreciate you taking the time to contact us. We aim to
    respond in full to your enquiry within 5 working days.

    Kind Regards,
    Southern Customer Services

    Reminder of your message:

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    Dear Southern,

    I am about to copy and paste an email I have already sent
    directly
    to Southern to which I am awaiting a reply. Please let me know
    your
    thoughts. The alarm began to sound when my daughter was already
    halfway on the train and my baby was already on board in her
    buggy.
    I couldn't leave either of them so was in a very difficult
    position. I did not have a free hand to pull the emergency alarm
    and it all happened very quickly.

    Dear Sirs,

    I am writing to inform you of what could have been a very
    serious
    incident involving myself and my children whilst boarding the
    15.37
    train from Epsom to Dorking earlier today.

    I was travelling with my son, aged 11, my daughter aged 3 and my
    baby daughter aged 9 months.

    Whilst attempting to board the train at Epsom station, a very
    kind
    member of the public helped me to carry my baby daughter in her
    pushchair onto the train, leaving my son holding the hand of my
    daughter on the platform. I then turned to reach across to take
    my
    daughter's other hand to help her to board the train whilst my
    son
    continued to hold her other hand. I should point out here that
    there was a very large gap between the train and the edge of the
    platform and that the train was also a good deal higher than the
    platform, making this quite a difficult task. My daughter was
    stepping from the platform onto the train as the doors started
    to
    close. My son had her by one hand (still on the platform) and I
    had
    her by the other hand inside the train. The doors closed onto my
    legs and I managed to hold them open for just long enough to
    squeeze my daughter and my son onto the train which had already
    started to move. My son's arm and my legs were injured in the
    process. If we had not acted so quickly, my daughter could
    easily
    have slipped down between the train and the platform and, as the
    train was moving and nobody appeared to have noticed what was
    going
    on, I dread to think what could have happened.

    The kind passenger who helped us board the train could clearly
    see
    how shocked my son and I were. She was very supportive and
    helped
    us to leave the train once we arrived at Ashtead. On arriving at
    Ashtead station, I reported the incident immediately at the
    ticket
    office. The gentleman was very kind and filled out a form for
    me.
    The other gentleman who was operating the barrier was also very
    kind and offered us a lift home. Instead, I felt that some fresh
    air would help me as I felt very shocked and shaken by what had
    occurred and at the thought of how terrible it could have been
    had
    my son and I not taken the action we did to save my daughter.

    I would like to know how this could happen. Where was the person
    responsible for making sure that everyone was safely on board
    the
    train before the doors closed and the train started to move? How
    could this go unnoticed? I have been shaking and feeling quite
    sick
    since the incident and my son is upset at the thought of what
    could
    have happened to his little sister. I keep envisaging what could
    have happened and it is very, very distressing.

    I can see bruises developing on both my legs and my son says
    that
    his right arm hurts,

    I await your response.

    Yours faithfully,

    Amanda Gibb

    ------------------

    Here is some information from FixMyTransport about the location
    of
    this issue:

    Location name: Epsom Rail Station

    Area: Epsom

    Easting: 520700.0

    Northing: 160900.0

    ----------

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  • 4 Peter Dixon commented close 22:09 29 Dec 2011

    Amanda.

    This sounds a very serious incident that requires urgent attention. For your own records, please can you get pictures of your legs to demonstrate bruising. I am going to alert Southern through their Twitter feed too.

    Kind regards

    FMT volunteer

    anorak
    admin
  • 5 Peter Dixon commented close 10:26 30 Dec 2011

    Hello Amanda

    Southern have informed me that they have received your complaint.

    Kind regards

    FMT volunteer

    anorak
    admin
  • 6 Amanda Gibb commented close 11:14 30 Dec 2011

    Hi Peter,

    Thanks for your help with this. I have taken photos of the bruises on my legs as you suggested. I spent much of last night unable to sleep for thinking of what could have happened. My son also got upset during the night for the same reason. Thankfully my daughter is too little to understand.

    I will let you know if I hear anything from Southern directly.

    Kind Regards,

    Amanda

  • 7 Darren Longhurst Ukpnradio commented close 11:44 30 Dec 2011

    That's terrible Mandy, I hope you get some resolution to stop it happening again.

  • 8 Debbie Amos commented close 12:56 30 Dec 2011

    They need to stop cutting costs and have the man on the station again to inform the driver when it is safe to go!

  • 9 Stu Ukpnradio Tidmarsh commented close 12:57 30 Dec 2011

    That's unbelievable! Hope you all are ok? Xx

  • 10 karen penfold commented close 14:29 30 Dec 2011

    I hope you don't mind me reading this but it grabbed my attention. This is so unbelievable and i'm so sorry yourself and your precious children are distressed by this incident. I really hope you get some answers and an apology of some sort Amanda, Doesn't bear thinking what might of happened. There should be platform staff at all times to ensure the public get on and off the train safely!!! Just shocking!

  • 11 Amanda Gibb commented close 14:43 30 Dec 2011

    Of course I don't mind. Thanks for caring. I am still really shocked. Luckily little Katy is too small to really understand what could have happened but Max is really upset. The bruises are nothing in comparison to the horrid images I keep seeing in my mind. Thanks for your support x

  • 12 April Gibb commented close 16:25 30 Dec 2011

    I supported!

  • 13 Amanda Gibb commented close 13:02 03 Jan 2012

    Hi everyone,

    Just to let you know that BBC Surrey have shown an interest in discussing what happened on the radio. Hopefully this will help to raise awareness and maybe get something done.

    Thanks again for your support and I will keep you all posted.

    Amanda

  • 14 Amanda Gibb added an update close 15:02 03 Jan 2012

    I have heard back from Southern. They have downloaded the cctv and will be in touch again after their investigations...

  • 15 Dave H commented close 16:22 03 Jan 2012

    Southern should be reporting this to ORR, and through them the Rail Accident Investigation Board, it is a reportable incident and RAIB has recently reported on another incident at Brentwood, where a passenger fell between the train and platform and the train then departed VERY fortunately with another passenger holding her legs so that the train passed and caused only minor injuries. Ideally you should report an incident like this to BT Police as quickly as possible, so that they can secure, for the avoidance of any doubt, the evidence (CCTV, train safety circuits, and the condition of staff/passengers at the time)

    I'm not sure whether the trains on this route are Driver Only Operation (DOO), but is a very serious concern that the train was able to take power with the doors substantially open - suggesting that the safety circuit to prove door closure was not working, in addition to the driver (if DOO) or conductor failing to see the problem (checking directly or by failure of checking system).

    On older trains it was possible to apply the emergency brake from the platform and from the train if a train was departing with such a threat to passenger safety (and for the older trains actually having a door open), this is generally not possible with most modern trains and no emergency stop system, is provided on the platform at all - there have been occasions when lives might have been saved if those on a station platform had been able to stop a train departing with a passenger trapped, and other occasions (recent one in Manchester) where only the vigilance of another passenger stopped a train departing when a passenger (who was as it happened - drunk) fell between the train and platform.

    Hong Kong's MTR system is DOO and on every platform there are emergency stop buttons, perhaps, given the incidence of passengers' being trapped or falling like this trains and routes where DOO is authorised should have emergency stop facilities on the platform and inside by the train doors.

    Do get confirmation that this incident has been formally recorded, give the potential seriousness of the event had you not been able to get everyone in through the doors.

  • 16 Dave H commented close 16:27 03 Jan 2012

    Re evidence - have you contacted BT Police and arranged to have your injuries properly documented whilst they are clearly visible, and additionally make sure there are no hidden injuries. Again acting with the minimum of delay will ensure that the injuries are fresh and clearly those arising from the incident.

    If you have not done so, take photographs now

  • 17 Amanda Gibb commented close 16:38 03 Jan 2012

    Thanks Dave,
    I will report it to the transport police as soon as I can, hopefully this evening. I have taken some photos of my legs. My son has been having nightmares and keeps talking about what could have happened. My daughter has flatly refused to travel by train and got quite upset at the thought of it the other day. I can't help but think about what could have happened to her had we not acted as quickly as we did.
    Thank you for your support and advice. I will keep you posted,
    Amanda

  • 18 Gayle Amos commented close 18:06 03 Jan 2012

    Oh no. poor Kids. i really hope this gets sorted asap and that it is treated as severely as possible. xxx

  • 19 Amanda Gibb added an update close 11:11 04 Jan 2012

    I have just done an interview for BBC Radio Surrey which will be aired tomorrow morning at 7 and again at 8. They are going to try to get our local MP, Chris Grayling, and a representative from Southern on to comment.

  • 20 Myf Nixon commented close 11:38 04 Jan 2012

    Excellent! I will be sure to tune in.

    anorak
    admin
  • 21 Amanda Gibb added an update close 15:25 04 Jan 2012

    I've just had a long conversation on the phone with the head of safety at Southern. I am convinced that they are taking this seriously. He has promised to let me know the outcome of their investigation. He will be on the radio tomorrow morning too.

  • 22 Dave H commented close 23:26 04 Jan 2012

    I can't help thinking that the confrontational way (ie a complaint to customer services and going to the media before tackling the head of safety with Southern) has kicked off this incident and the way it is rolling forward in a way that will leave all concerned with some backtracking and linked issues.

    A means to provide a member of the public with a swift and direct route to report a serious safety issue, complain, where appropriate, or actually sit down with the operator to solve a problem which they may well share with their customers (eg the lack of carriages, and resulting inadequate resources to keep trains aside long enough to carry out thorough maintenance, is due to the Government contract that they are required to fulfill, and the operator may not have any way to get around that).

    In this case the procedure should have been to notify the operator with the minimum of delay - use the emergency button on a Help point, tell any staff present, you want the incident recorded, or phone BT Police or Network Rail as an urgent call 0800 40 50 40 or 08457 11 41 41.

    What is needed is actually a Transport Issues Clearing House, so that an incident like yours would have been fast tracked to the right people, through a better resourced operation, and the current refusal of many operators to deal with an initial complaint made by a third party* is sorted out.

    *The existing complaints processes for rail and bus operate in this way - make the complaint directly and if you don't get a satisfactory answer the matter will be taken up by Passenger Focus or the Bus Appeals Body

  • 23 Dave H commented close 23:43 04 Jan 2012

    It does also highlight a staff training issue for Southern - surely the station staff who took down details should have realised the serious nature of the incident, and you should have had a duty manager taking details with the minimum of delay (ie within 24 hours).

    That said I'm not surprised at the failings - in 1996 I was catching a train at Barnham and due to the non skid material wearing off the smooth aluminium step my leg went down between the train and the platform. I was walking wounded and in order not to delay the train awaiting first aid the guard called ahead - they had a first aid room at Worthing, but I did need to get to London for a last train of the day and so we both thought I would be certain to get seen at Brighton, where in theory the number of staff employed would require appointed first aiders on duty and easily located. However at the peak of the evening rush hour no one could find a first aider, on a station where thousands of passengers were flooding though, well over a hundred of staff were working on trains and platforms.

    The obfuscation of the reporting and claims service - at that time still handled by a BR department at Paddington for all the rail operators, did not deliver any satisfactory result, although indirectly I did notice that a great deal more attention was being paid to keeping the non skid surface serviceable on those trains.

  • 24 Amanda Gibb commented close 05:35 05 Jan 2012

    Thank you Dave.
    I think it is important to point out first of all that the media contacted me as opposed to vice-versa as a result of reading the story on his very site and I felt that raising public awareness may go some way towards preventing a similar incident in the future.
    I would also like to make it clear that I did report the incident to station staff at my earliest opportunity. I could see no harm in following up by contacting the operator directly upon my return home in order to reinforce my point.
    I would say that the approach I have taken has been direct rather than aggressive. Following what could have been a real tragedy, I can think of no parent who would act differently.
    The head of safety from Southern was very open, frank and honest. He apologised and accepted that the correct safety procedure had not been followed by platform staff. He has reported the mater to the ORR and the staff involved are being spoken to today following which, appropriate action will be taken. I am satisfied that this issue is being treated as a serious one by Southern and am happy with the way in which they have responded thus far.
    Amanda

  • 25 Myf Nixon commented close 11:34 05 Jan 2012

    Hi Amanda,
    Do you know what time you were on the radio? Would like to hear it but not sure about listening to all 3 hours!!

    anorak
    admin
  • 26 Amanda Gibb commented close 13:15 05 Jan 2012

    Haha Myf, that's fine! I was on just after 7 and again at around 8.10, maybe just before. Bob Crow, the RMT leader, made himself look a little silly during the 8.10 interview in my opinion. It's definitely worth a listen!
    Amanda

  • 27 Myf Nixon commented close 14:13 05 Jan 2012

    Thanks Amanda, I've heard it. Still giving me horrendous images so I can't think what it's doing to you. You come across very clearly, and nice to hear Ava's contribution too :) It's interesting to hear the other people who rang in with opinions and stories.

    If anyone else would like to listen, here's the link.

    The first mention is at 1:00:42 which you can fast forward to with the slider. Then the main part is at 1:08:55, and again at 2:08:10.

    By the way, did you and the Epsom Guardian make contact?

    anorak
    admin
  • 28 Paul Hollinghurst commented close 01:30 06 Jan 2012

    BBC Surrey have put the 10 minute clip here:
    http://audioboo.fm/boos/612257-ashtead-mum-tells-how-she-and-kids-got-trapped-in-train-doors-at-epsom-southern_trains-bobcrowe

    anorak
    admin
  • 29 Amanda Gibb commented close 10:22 06 Jan 2012

    Thanks Paul,
    I was trying to find a way of doing that! Nick Wallis was great and Steve from Southern has been fantastic so far...Mr Crowe on the other hand...well, what can I say except that I am pleased he is not speaking on my behalf!
    Once I have heard more from Southern I will post again. Also, two local papers are running the story in next week's issues - The Leatherhead Advertiser and the Epsom Guardian.
    Thanks again to all of you for supporting,
    Amanda

  • 30 Darren Longhurst Ukpnradio commented close 16:35 06 Jan 2012

    Mandy you were great!...Bob is a plank who is on too much money and is trying badly to justify his job. Cannot believe he said about people making mistakes..yeah it could cost a life! It's not as though he went to the shop and bought a brown loaf instead of a white loaf! Crowe makes my blood boil!!!

  • 31 Peter Dixon commented close 19:57 06 Jan 2012

    These are my personal opinions.

    I want to help those who are reading this thread understand what Bob Crow was trying to do and state what he probably should have done. Amanda, I don't know how much you have been told in confidence and I hope that I do not make a generalisation that is incorrect. It is entirely possible that this has been answered to you personally and that I am wrong about what is not publicly known in the points I make below. I am sorry if I have done this.

    Southern has said two members of staff, so this is a fact. But there are a few points that I think Bob Crow tried to raise but badly.

    * We don't know where they were - Distraction, called away from the platform, handling other issues, engaged in other activities.
    * We don't know what their responsibilities were for the successful dispatch of the train, what part of the process was missed and what contributed to it (I tend to find that a number of small factors contribute to a serious incident and that it is not just one persons fault even if this is stated initially. A perusal of a report from the Rail Accident Investigation Board will demonstrate where I am coming from http://www.raib.gov.uk)

    However, I think he made a mistake going after other points that were not really helpful to his argument.

    * Going after DOO on unstaffed stations considering that a staffed station is where this potential fatality occurred. This incident suggests we should get rid of the staff as they have failed to prevent this incident.
    * Pointing out that the union will defend its members. We know that but there are certain times where you don't beat that drum
    * That we all make mistakes. Amanda very successfully tackled that.

    Personally, I think he should have said that he was sorry to hear of the incident with Amanda and her children and the union supports the operator to undertake a full and thorough investigation into the incident looking at all of the factors involved in this particular incident and to roll out the lessons that can be learned to prevent it from happening again in future to make the railways even safer. Most unions have safety officers and their members expect their union to help in this important remit and everyone wants to see a safer railway.

    Such a simple line would have prevented most of the flak he gained from the radio presenter.

    Like I said at beginning this is my personal opinion.

    anorak
    admin
  • 32 Paul Hollinghurst commented close 22:26 06 Jan 2012

    For anyone interested in seeing how the most serious station incidents are investigated, here is a report on an incident where a passenger fell between a train and the platform at Brentwood thankfully only sustaining some relatively minor injuries (this was mentioned in an earlier posting on this topic):
    http://www.raib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/111128_R192011_Brentwood.pdf

    Below is some background to this and the Epsom incident based on my own opinion which I hope is helpful.

    Although the incident in Brentwood described above was caused by a mistake by the passenger, this has not stopped the report making a number of recommendations. In this particular case the doors were completely closed so the train was able to pull out of the station. The investigation focussed on why the incident was not spotted.

    Although the circumstances of Amanda Gibb's incident at Epsom are different as it was not her fault, Southern will be wanting to answer similar questions about what caused of the incident, what could be done to reduce the chances of it happening again, whether the safety systems in place to reduce the impact of the incident worked correctly and whether they could they be improved. People do very occasionally make mistakes, but it is rare for an investigation to not at least find that there was a contributory factor. It is of course traumatic for people like Amanda and her family to be caught up in such an incident especially when it will not be immediately apparent what other systems are there to protect the passenger from further danger. Fortunately in this case they appear to have worked by isolating the power when the doors were open to prevent a traumatic incident turning out worse.

    It is good to hear that Amanda and Southern are having such a constructive dialogue about this and hope her family is able to enjoy rail travel again at some point soon.

    anorak
    admin
  • 33 Dave H commented close 20:36 13 Jan 2012

    Thanks Paul and Peter for articulating the points and a big plug to anyone who has an 'incident' to make sure it is promptly reported. The Brentwood incident illustrated how a number of pieces of evidence had to be pieced together without the advantage of being secured at the time. The passenger was believed to be slightly drunk when they fell, but by the time the report was made had had time to sober-up or have a stiff drink to deal with the shock.

    Many years ago I did a desk top disaster exercise involving trains and we made a classic mistake of not getting the police to get statements (and carry out checks on drink/drugs or other factors affecting the vigilance of those involved with safety critical tasks) whilst all was still fresh, and the potential to reflect on the event/make excuses over time was available. As a result key people went home before being seen by the Police - we learned some lessons there.

    I read the RAIB report about Brentwood, and am very surprised that it did not seem to consider a recommendation to consider means by which any person present when another person is placed at risk when a train is passing through or moving off from a station platform, can raise the alarm. The tragic death at Wimbledon on Saturday 7th might just have been averted if a 'panic push' could have been hit the moment the woman was seen to leave the platform, and some indication set off.

    I've been thinking a bit about this and it might be something simple like the rotating orange or blue beacons used on recovery trucks and emergency vehicles which lit up along the platform. Big penalties for abuse, naturally, but equally the potential to hit the emergency stop when you see the person hovering as they think about jumping - or thoughtlessly placing themselves in danger, as well as when a member of staff fails to spot passengers still trying to get on or off a train as the doors close.

    The key risk for DOO is that the operation relies on the vigilance of just one person - that is a big responsibility to carry. The independent safety 'circuit' of passengers on the train and on the platform provides a valuable safeguard against the fallibility of one person's observation. I recall at least 2 fatal train crashes where the reverse detail happened, concentration on platform activity lead to the driver making an assumption that the signal was green (or still green), when a conflicting train movement had been permitted ahead

  • 34 Dave H commented close 20:49 13 Jan 2012

    Perhaps a rider - it is the procedure almost without fail for rail staff and bus drivers responsible for moving large numbers of people around safely, to be tested for drink and drugs immediately an incident happens, and a testament to the high standards the staff keep that a positive result is almost unheard of.

  • 35 Amanda Gibb commented and marked the problem as fixed. close 21:55 09 Feb 2012

    Southern have, so far, dealt with my complaint impeccably. Their Head of Safety contacted me by telephone to discuss what happened and to let me know he would be carrying out a thorough investigation. A few days later he called again after viewing the cctv footage and discussed the incident with the two members of station staff who should have been watching to make sure that something like this could not happen. He confirmed that they failed to carry out their proper checks and that it was this that led to the terrifying incident we experienced. He advised that the staff members would be dealt with as appropriate following an in-depth interview. He apologised on behalf of Southern and has offered my children a day at the training depot, seeing how things work, trying out the simulator, etc. I really cannot fault them.
    However, my daughter has refused to go on a train since this happened which has made life quite difficult as I do not drive and negotiating buses with a pram is no easy task. We are working on trying to help her to overcome her fear.

  • 36 Paul Hollinghurst commented close 23:08 09 Feb 2012

    Amanda,
    Thanks for the update letting us know how Southern have dealt with this issue.
    I hope your daughter overcomes her fear soon, possibly with the help of Southern's offer. I am sure you have been trying plenty of ideas, but maybe for a start if you had an opportunity to join a stationary train at a terminus it would be less threatening and sufficiently different to the incident to be less of a worry (although I appreciate there are no terminus stations close near you).
    Good luck with this. If there is any more news or progress, please come back and let us know.
    Paul

    anorak
    admin
  • 37 Dave H commented close 17:24 10 Feb 2012

    Perhaps Southern's duty to put matters right can extend to providing some professional assistance with resolving the effect of this incident on your daughter, After all they will have a need to call on such counselling for their own staff when they have experienced the trauma of seeing some of the more serious incidents that can occur on the railway.

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  • started 29 December 2011
  • supporters 26
Epsom Rail Station in Epsom operated by Southern
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