A female traveller who was hospitalised after being struck by train debris is suing London Underground for personal injury compensation.
The accident occurred during morning rush hour in November last year. The woman was standing on a Central Line platform in Mile End when a protective barrier, used to prevent passengers falling between tube carriages, broke from a passing tube and struck her in the face at 30mph.
She was later treated in hospital for a cut eye and two-inch gash on her face. Two other women were also injured in the incident.
A breakdown in communication was blamed for the accident as the train was allowed to continue on its journey, even though the problem had been reported an hour before the train was finally taken out of service, travelling unfixed before stewards halted its journey.
Director of Safety Mike Strzelecki said; “We detected there was a faulty barrier and we failed to remove it promptly and efficiently. If things had gone slightly differently we would have removed that barrier and the accident wouldn’t have happened.”
Introduced in 1999 following fatal accidents to travellers, the wooden barriers consist of a canvas screen supported by two wooden poles and secured with four bungee ropes. Roughly 7,000 have been fitted to 600 trains.
On top of compensation paid to the unnamed victim, London Underground could now be facing a fine of up to £20,000 after breaching the Health and Safety at Work etc Act.