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Blind man who fell to death at station ‘might have been saved’ by platform edge warning


An inquest into the death of a visually impaired man who died after falling from a prepare station platform will give attention to Network Rail and if safer paving may have saved his life.

Cleveland Gervais, 53, was struck by a prepare moments after falling onto the tracks at Eden Park station in Beckenham, South East London, shortly after 7pm on February 26, 2020.

A subsequent Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) report concluded that he “in all probability” fell from the platform edge as a result of there was nothing to warn him of the hazard.

Emergency providers arrived at the scene, however had been then unable to decide whether or not the facility to the tracks had been switched off till a Network Rail incident officer arrived at the station.

A pre-inquest assessment (PIR) was held at South London Coroner’s Court on Wednesday (April 21).

The particular person was hit by a prepare at Eden Park station

The function of a PIR is to set up if there are any specific points arising round regulation or process that want to be decided earlier than a full inquest is held.

Assistant Coroner Catherine Wood set out that the inquest will give attention to whether or not tactile paving, which has since been put in at the station, may have saved Cleveland’s life, together with the final provision of providers for the visually impaired.

Network Rail will probably be underneath the microscope on this problem.

The inquest may even delve into questions round whether or not emergency providers had been in a position to get to Cleveland shortly sufficient after they arrived at the station.

The RAIB report said that there was a 12-minute delay between paramedics arriving and truly having the ability to get onto the monitor and attain Cleveland.

The 53-year-old often used public transport, however was blind with gentle sensitivity solely in his proper eye and lowered acuity and tunnel imaginative and prescient in his left eye.

0 Croydon at night

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The platform edge, although, was not fitted with tactile paving, which is meant to help visually impaired folks at stations.

Around half of all mainline stations within the UK are additionally not geared up with the tactile strip.

Allan Spence, Network Rail’s head of public and passenger security, stated at the time that tactile paving was already being fitted throughout station platforms in that space, nevertheless it had not been accomplished at the time of Cleveland’s death.

Assistant Coroner Wood said that the inquest will happen over 5 days in entrance of a jury.

But she informed Cleveland’s associate, who was in attendance at the PIR, that the complete inquest is “unlikely to be for fairly a while” with the court docket booked up till October due to a backlog of circumstances triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Representatives of London Fire Brigade, RAIB and Network Rail additionally attended the listening to.

A second PIR has been set for August 23, at which it’s hoped a provisional inquest date will be set.