First Capital Connect 'deeply regret' welfare failures after train break-down (From St Albans & Harpenden Review)
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First Capital Connect 'deeply regret' welfare failures after train break-down
First Capital Connect has expressed "deep regret" at failures to look after the welfare of passengers stranded on a broken down train, which lead to the rail operator being fined £75,000.
An investigation by the Office of Rail Regulation discovered the company inadequately planned its response to a train which broke down in 2011 with around 700 passengers on board at Dock Junction between St Pancras International and Kentish Town stations in North London.
FCC failed to provide those on board with accurate information, working ventilation or toilet facilities, leading passengers to leave the train.
Responding to today's verdict at Blackfriars Crown Court, David Statham, First Capital Connect Managing Director said: "The safety of our passengers is our top priority and we deeply regret what happened back in May 2011.
"We didn’t live up to our own high standards in the way we handled this event which is why we took quick and decisive action afterwards.
"We commissioned comprehensive internal and external investigations that led to a range of actions to ensure this unusual combination of events is extremely unlikely to happen again.
"The safest place for passengers while a controlled evacuation or rescue is being arranged is on the train and we have new processes, techniques and equipment to speed the process whenever possible and to make it more comfortable for those on board.
"We will reflect on the comments made by the judge in court today and ensure they are incorporated in our ongoing process of learning from this incident.
"We would like to apologise once again to all those affected."
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