Tram accident safety pledge

Tram on Lord Street, Fleetwood
Tram on Lord Street, Fleetwood
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THE boss of Blackpool’s new super trams today urged people to be more cautious when crossing the tracks following another collision.

The warning from Blackpool Transport chief executive Trevor Roberts comes after a pensioner was struck by a tram as she tried to cross the line in her mobility scooter in Cleveleys.

The 81-year-old suffered bruises and a graze after she was hit at West Drive, near Cleveleys Methodist Church, at around 11.20am yesterday.


Mr Roberts said the new trams are safe but urged people to be more cautious.

He added: “The new trams are safer but people need to take great care when in the vicinity of the tramway and particularly when crossing it.

“The trams aren’t operating any faster than before but do accelerate and stop much quicker.

“In terms of safety, the new trams are fully compliant with everything which reflects best practice in terms of modern operational safety features and design, and the stopping performance in an emergency is exemplary.

“We appreciate the public are still getting used to the new system and our drivers are trained to be aware at all times but care does need to taken at all times.”

The crash came less than two weeks after a woman in her early 20s was struck by a tram as she was crossing the tracks at Lauderdale Avenue in Anchorsholme.

Both incidents are now being investigated by the Rail Accident Investigation Bureau (RAIB).

A Volkswagen Polo was in collision with a tram at the junction of South Strand, Fleetwood, in May and in April one of the vehicles derailed because of sand blown onto the tracks while on its maiden journey.

Mr Roberts added: “We can confirm there was an incident yesterday morning where a mobility scooter collided with one of the new light rail transit.

“Further investigations into the accident are taking place by the relevant authorities.

“We are thankful that the driver of the scooter sustained only very minor injuries and she was able to leave the scene in the mobility scooter.

“An investigatory report is submitted to RAIB of all accidents plus Blackpool Transport always further look into incidents of this nature along with the infrastructure providers to see if anything can be improved from a safety point of view.”

A police spokesman said the pensioner was treated for a graze at the scene of yesterday’s crash and is now recovering at home.