16 October 2015
RMT Press Office
Fifteen years on from the Hatfield rail disaster RMT has today raised serious safety concerns around the planning and delivery of rail maintenance through the Planning and Delivery of Work and Safe Work Leader (PDSW/SWL) programme.
On October 17 2000 a train travelling from Kings Cross to Leeds derailed just south of Hatfield station, killing four passengers and injuring over 70 people.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: that the cause of the crash – the catastrophic failure of a faulty piece of track – eventually forced rail maintenance back into the public sector.
But he warned that new Safe Work Leader infrastructure maintenance system had created chaos and a fog of confusion on site.
“RMT has requested that Network Rail withdraw the system rolled out in the East Midlands and work with the union to develop a safe programme we can all support.
“The picture we are getting from reps is one of ‘this is getting dangerous and we’d be safer under the old system’.
“Network Rail needs to take this message seriously otherwise RMT will have to resort to industrial action to get the current dangerous programme halted,” he said.